As I’ve mentioned before, I am a fan of the slug. No one is more surprised than me. Seems I am not alone – at least by their cousins, the snails. This BBC Radio 4 program features amateur scientist, Ruth Brooks, who was inspired by the snails in her garden to conduct a study on them. She was curious how the snails kept returning to her garden after being chucked over her garden fence. In her study, sponsored in part by a science program on Radio 4, she discovered that snails had to be taken at least 30 meters away (nearly 33 yards) before they couldn’t find their way back.
This inspired her to examine other garden creatures’ homing instincts. It’s impressive to hear the results of dung beetles (using astronomy), butterflies, cats, dogs, pigeons and finally humans. I encourage you to listen. Ms. Brooks is charming and I enjoyed hearing about the fascinating adaptations made to find the way back home.
If you don’t have time, at least listen to the discussion on cats’ homing instincts. The clip link is on the bottom of the Radio 4 page. You’ll see the beautiful blue-grey cat or http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p01p33yk