In case you missed the last instalment, the ARKive team have been having some fun putting a wildlife twist on the popular ‘Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon’ game, in which you link actors through their films to Kevin Bacon in just six steps.
Last week I challenged everyone to get from the narwal to the pika in six wildlife-themed steps, using only those species that are on ARKive. Well, the chains we received were pretty varied, with steps involving Ricky Gervais, David Attenborough, and the faeces-eating behaviour of young elephants – lovely!
After much debate we have decided that the winner is….cue drum roll….Mike T! Congratulations Mike, it was the cunning use of the magpie’s Latin name that swung it. Although I have to disagree on one point – pikas are much cuter than chinchillas! Obviously there’s no right or wrong answer, but here’s the solution that I came up with:
Due to their long single tusk, narwhals have long been associated with unicorns and in fact, part of their Latin name (Monodon monoceros) actually means unicorn in Greek. The stuff of legends also, dugongs are thought to be the origin for many mermaid tales.
Dugongs are the only entirely marine mammal to feed exclusively on plants, a trait that means they are sometimes referred to as ‘sea cows’. Another cow-named species is the….
Getting the hang of it now? This weeks challenge is to hop, step and jump from the spectacular manta ray to the comedic secretary bird in six furry, scaly, or feathery steps. Again, post your chains as comments on this blog and we’ll decide the winner.
Bonnie Metherell, ARKive Media Researcher