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喵星人的科学 – 译学馆
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The Science of Cats

网友们喜欢猫 但你知道每只猫鼻子上的花纹
The internet loves cats, but did you know the print on the cats nose has a unique
就像指纹一样独一无二吗? 或者猫薄荷对猫来说真的就像是毒品吗?
rigid pattern just like a fingerprint? Or that catnip really is like a
drug for cats? One of its volatile oils called nepetalactone enters
它进入到猫的鼻部的组织后可以发挥类似于信息素的作用 猫的感觉神经元
the cats nasal tissue and acts like an artificial cat pharamone. The sensory neurons are
受到了刺激 最后引起猫的大脑的80%
stimulated and ultimately trigger a behavioral and sexual response in the
产生行为和性的反应 这对于一天有85%的时间没事干的
brain and body in around 80% of cats. Which must be nice considering
cats spend around 85% of their day doing absolutely nothing.
Drinking, eating, defecating and even mating only take up about 4%
combined. But when they are moving, they always seem to land on their feet. This
这是因为 翻正反射 不仅因为猫
is because of something called the ‘Righting Reflex’. Not only do cats have very
sensitive motion and gravity sensing abilities allowing them to determine
决定以什么样的方式掉下来 它们还拥有一副柔软的脊椎
which way is down, they also have an extremely flexible backbone and no
By bending in the middle and using fast twitch muscle fibers they can whip
它们可以迅速的翻面而不改变角动量 而且你知道
around without ever changing their net angular momentum. And did you know that
when a cat lifts its tail while being pet it’s really inviting you to smell it’s
猫通过气味来交流 这些暴露的腺体和信息素决定了
Cats use sent to communicate and this exposes glands and pharamones holding
它们独特的气味 就像拥抱和握手一样 它们会
their signature smell. A nice alternative to a hug or a handshake. They also
在你身上蹭来散播这种气味 它们脸上 尾巴上和身体上的腺体
rub up against you to spread these pharamones. The glands on their face, tail and
帮助他们跟你用气味来交流 同时也让附近的猫知道
body help them to claim you with their sent, while also leaving nearby cats
自己的身份 性能力和领土 另一方面
signals about their identity, sexual availability and territory. On the other
猫通过埋自己的屎来掩盖味道 这种进化出的本能
hand, cats bury their poop in an attempt to hide its smell. This evolutionary
instinct is not only to avoid attracting predators
也可以在野外用于向喵王表示自己的温顺 在你家
but to show that they’re submissive to a dominant cat in the wild. In the case of
your house, this is your cats way of recognizing you as dominant.
尽管在完全黑暗中猫看不见东西 但它们在昏暗的条件下
Also in complete darkness cats can’t actually see, though they can see much
的视力比你和我好很多 猫的视网膜下有一层特殊的细胞
better than you and I in dim light. Cats have a layer of cells behind the
叫脉络膜反光毯 这就像一个额外的反光镜
retina called the ‘Tupetum Lucidum’ which acts like a mirror reflecting extra
把光反射到视网膜 在昏暗的地方 这给予了它们眼睛第二次
light back at the retina. In near darkness this gives their eyes a second chance to
收集光线的机会 但如果一点光都没有的话 它们就跟我们一样了
pick up more light, but without any light present they can’t see anymore than we can.
And if you ever see a cat with three distinct colours, often called a Calico
这叫做玳瑁猫 一般为雌性 猫毛发的基因位于
or Tortoise Shell cat you can bet it’s female. The fur colour gene is located on
X染色体上 这意味着雌性可以多两种颜色
the ‘X’ chromosome. This means females can have two colours in addition to white
因为它们有两条X染色体 另一方面 雄性的Y染色体
because they have two ‘X’ chromosomes. The male ‘Y’ chromosome, on the other hand,
没有颜色基因 结果就是雄性只能拥有
does not have any colour genes, as a result males will generally only have
one colour along with white
尽管在很稀有的情况下它们可以有更多的颜色 有趣的是 我们仍然
though in rare genetic cases it is possible for them to have more. Interestingly we still
不知道喵星人为什么会发出呜呜声 事实上猫不管在高兴
don’t really know why cats purr. In fact cats purr both during pleasurable
还是受伤的情况下都会发出这种声音 很多人认为
situations but also while they’re in duress or injured. While many believe
it’s a means to communicate passivity or pleasure,
one interesting theory suggests that the frequency that purrs occur at
24-140赫兹时可以促进骨骼生长和治愈 因为猫
(24 – 140 Hz) promotes healthy bone growth and healing. Because cats have
适应了频繁休息和睡觉的生活方式 这可能是
adapted to a lifestyle with frequent rest and sleep, this may be a low
energy mechanism to promote muscle and bone health.
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