50 Random Facts List #149

26Acorns

Due to animals matching the output of acorns, oak trees will have a "Masting" year. A masting year will see a tree produce tons of extra nuts to prevent all seeds being eaten. All trees in an area will do it at the same time for some unknown reason.


27. In the book, Stuart Little was actually a human who looked like a mouse, not an actual mouse.


28. Apollo 11 astronauts were quarantined for 21 days after returning from the moon to prepare for "the remote possibility that they are harboring unknown lunar organisms that might endanger life on earth"


29. Azure-winged magpies show 'human-like' generosity. They provide food to their group members spontaneously and without the other birds begging them. This so-called 'proactive prosociality' has long been believed to be a human hallmark.


30. Joseph Beyrle is the only man known to have served in both the US and Soviet armies during World War 2. He took part in the D-Day landings, was captured, escaped and joined a Soviet tank battalion soon after.


31Pneumatic tube system

There is no trash collection on most of New York City’s Roosevelt Island because a pneumatic tube system sends 10 tons of garbage a day from trash cutes in buildings to a trash processing plant at 60 mph.


32. Pilots of the SR-71 Blackbird were often tasked to fly over heads of state triggering a shockwave to remind countries what they were doing was against US policy.


33. During the USA's "Great Depression" in the 1930s, librarians in Kentucky rode around on horseback, dispensing books to over 50,000 families and 155 public schools: "one librarian had to hike her 18-mile route when her mule died."


34. In 2014, Walmart China had to recall donkey meat products because testing revealed they contained fox meat.


35. Humans are driving mammals to shift their activity from day to night making many of them nocturnal.


36Peppers

The plants we know as "peppers" (chili, bell, etc.) are only called that because Christopher Columbus thought they tasted like black pepper when he first tried them in the Caribbean.


37. The largest living organism in the world is a honey fungus which is spread across 2.4 miles (3.8 km). It is located in the Blue Mountains in Oregon.


38. Certain species of a hawk (Black Kite) in Australia have been known to purposely spread wildfires beyond firebreaks in order to force prey out into the open.


39. The Ovitz family is the largest family of dwarves ever recorded, and the largest family to be sent to Auschwitz and survive. The family of twelve ranged from a 15-month-old baby to a 58-year-old woman.


40. In patients with nerve damage, their skin doesn’t get wrinkly when submerged in water.


41Porthemmet Beach

Locals in Cornwall, England created an imaginary beach named the Porthemmet beach to deal with overcrowded beaches. Fake signposts were put up all over the county leading to the ‘Best Beach in Cornwall,’ however the signs actually diverted tourists in the opposite direction from any of the coasts.


42. The New Zealand All Blacks rugby team refused to play in South Africa for 10 years due to their forced exclusion of Maori players. This ended in 1970 when South Africa deemed Maori players "honourary whites" and allowed them to play.


43. How common it is to have a different number of joints in the pinky toe? 56% people have two joints and three bones, 44% have one joint and two bones.


44. There is a Future Library in Norway being created where trees have just been planted, and authors of today were asked to write something to be read in 100 years. When the trees have grown in a century, they will be used to print the books, and only then, will they be made available for all to read.


45. Lawns take up nearly 2% of the surface of the continental United States, making turf grass—not corn—America’s largest irrigated crop.


46Sand

Sand is the second most used natural resource worldwide, after fresh water.


47. The Western fence lizard's blood kills Lyme disease in ticks that feed on them. The lizard is credited for the relatively low incidents of Lyme disease in the Western United States.


48. Caillou is bald because the original books portray him as a baby. When the time came to make him a 4-year-old, it was found that adding hair made him unrecognizable. So he stayed bald.


49. Triathlon bikes have a kind of different frame geometry than regular road cycles not only for improved aerodynamics but also to minimize the overlap of muscles that will be used in the running portion of the race. Apparently, this makes triathlon bikes extremely unpleasant to ride comparatively.


50. A man named Wenseslao Moguel survived his own execution, surviving 9 bullets and lived to the age of 85.

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