Animals are often very cute when they sleep, especially small napping dogs, but many species have unique sleeping habits. We all know bats sleep upside down, horses sleep upright, and sloths can sleep up to 15 hours a day (much like you hungover) but they’re not the only ones don’t sleep like us. Have you ever wondered how dolphins, otters or even spiders sleep? That’s what you’ll find in this top.
Like all mammals, the dolphin breathes through lungs but unlike humans, breathing is not a reflex for him: he must think about breathing. If the dolphin cannot rise to the surface, the water does not enter its lungs, so it cannot drown. On the other hand, he can die of asphyxiation if he remains too long without oxygen. This is the reason why only one half of the dolphin’s brain is asleep when the animal is resting, the other half is responsible for keeping its body above the surface of the water to be able to breathe.
2. Whales and belugas
Like dolphins, belugas and whales are only half asleep because only half of their brains are at rest. But unlike dolphins, which sleep on the surface of the water so they can breathe while asleep, belugas and whales sleep underwater for a short time and wake up to breathe. Often, these giant marine mammals sleep upright, which offers an impressive sight to divers who are lucky enough to see them.
Walruses are equipped with an air pocket along their gullet, which allows them to float effortlessly. They can thus sleep on the surface of the water, vertically or on their backs. Still, it’s not uncommon to see walruses sleeping on dry land, stacked on top of each other.
Hippos sleep in water, sometimes even in places with deep water. Indeed, the process of resurfacing to breathe is automatic in this animal. When asleep, the hippo slowly sinks into the water and rises to surface and breathe.
To protect themselves from terrestrial predators, otters sleep in the water by floating on their backs. To avoid being swept away by the current, otters sometimes wrap their hind legs in rooted seaweed. Baby otters, lutrons, also sleep on their backs, comfortably settled on their mother’s belly.
6. Frigates of the Pacific
It has been scientifically proven that some birds sleep while flying. This is all the more impressive when we talk about the Pacific frigatebird because this bird can fly for several months in a row without landing. The Pacific frigatebird sleeps only about 40 minutes a day, in short breaks of 7 to 12 seconds.
Meerkats usually sleep stacked on top of each other, in large burrows or out of sight. The leaders of the colony sleep in the middle, as far as possible from any external threat.
Giraffes only sleep 30 minutes a day taking 5 minute naps. At the same time, it is difficult to fall asleep any longer: being the largest herbivorous animal in the savannah, the giraffe is the constant target of predators and has nowhere to hide. Very often, giraffes sleep upright, ready to flee, but they can sometimes be seen crouching with their heads back.
Spiders don’t all have the same sleeping habits, it depends on their species. As spiders do not have eyelids, they do not close their eyes to sleep, but you can recognize a sleeping spider by the way its legs are folded under its body.
Like dolphins, ducks have unihemispheric sleep, meaning that only half of their brain is asleep at a time. This ability is linked to a survival instinct, ducks being constantly threatened by predators. Thus, ducks tend to sleep in a line, next to each other. The ducks at the end of the line always keep an eye open to protect the group.