When a person who has COVID-19 coughs or sneezes, they spray small liquid droplets from their nose or mouth which may contain the virus. If you are too close, you can breathe in the droplets, including the disease. To avoid that, the World Health Organization (WHO) advises maintaining at least 1 meter (3 feet) distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing. Some of us, however, don’t get it and aren’t following these guidelines, despite that we claim our species (humans) to be the most intelligent ones walking on earth. Yet, some animals seem to be way better at “practicing” social distancing.
From pigeons and seagulls to cats and moose, if everyone behaved like these critters, we would flatten the curve way quicker, so take notes.
1# Social Distancing
Interestingly, some animals, for example, chimpanzees and honeybees, do take measures to prevent the spread of disease. The two species can be really ruthless when it comes to ousting the sick.
Bacterial diseases that strike honeybee colonies, like American foulbrood, are particularly threatening to them, liquifying honeybee larvae from the inside. “That’s where the name comes from, that brown gooey mess. It smells very, very foul,” Alison McAfee, a postdoctoral fellow with North Carolina State University’s Entomology and Plant Pathology Department, told National Geographic.
Infected larvae emit telltale chemicals that older bees are able to smell, like oleic acid and β-ocimene, a bee pheromone, according to McAfee’s research. Immediately after identifying them, the bees will physically toss these diseased members from the hive, she said.
2# Cats Get It
3# Meanwhile In Poland
In 1966, as she was studying chimpanzees in Tanzania, Jane Goodall observed a chimp named McGregor who had contracted polio, caused by a highly contagious virus.
His fellow chimps attacked him, casting McGregor out of the troop. Partially paralyzed, McGregor even approached a few chimps grooming in a tree. He reached out a hand in greeting, but the others quickly moved away.
4# CAT-Cial Distancing In Japan
5# Social Distancing
“For a full two minutes old [McGregor] sat motionless, staring after them,” Goodall noted in her 1971 book In the Shadow of Man.
Goodall mentioned other instances of ostracized, polio-ridden chimps during her research as well, though highlighted that in some cases, infected individuals were eventually welcomed back into the group.
6# This Dog From Local News Is Practicing Social Distancing
7# Peacoks Know How To
8# Even Dogs Respect And Understand Social Distancing
9# Dogs Keeping Social Distance In Zagreb
10# Even The Moose Are Practicing Social Distancing
11# My Friends Cats Have This Social Distancing Malarkey Figured Out
12# Social Ducktancing
13# Doing Our Part To Keep Apart
14# Romeo and Mewliet