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I’m the resident weird question answerer at mentalfloss.com, where I cover science, history, etymology and Bruce Springsteen. I’ve also written about pig fat, poisonous newts, animal cognition, birth control and how to dissolve a Nobel Prize for Mental Floss, Men’s Health, Scientific American, Philadelphia Weekly, Philly.com, The Week, The Atlantic, ScienceNow, Chemical Heritage and others. I tweet as @mattsoniak and live in Philadelphia with my girlfriend and two cats.

The blog at MattSoniak.com is about new research on animal behavior and communication, with a strong focus on relationships between predators and prey, and the weapons and defenses of nonhuman animals. Why write about predators? One reason is a fondness for blood and guts, and writing about predators is sometimes like telling real-life monster stories. Another reason – which Robinson Jeffers beautifully summed up in the line, “What but the wolf’s tooth whittled so fine the fleet limbs of the antelope?” – is that predators are major ecological movers and shakers, something they don’t get a whole lot of respect for, especially when the average person might see them as villains that eat all the cute cuddly animals.