Can Cats Predict Earthquakes?
Muse Science Magazine for Kids|July/August 2021
Are animals’ powers to foretell natural disasters fact or folklore?
By Diana Lynn

Our planet quakes thousands of times a year, but we still can’t predict exactly when and where earthquakes will strike. What if animals’ odd behavior could warn us?

Ancient Greeks told a story about how mice, weasels, snakes, and centipedes ran off days before a terrible earthquake. And people still claim that animals act weird before earthquakes hit. Dogs keep on barking. Cows stop making milk. Toads jump out of ponds. From 2009 to 2012, scientists videoed ants living in an active earthquake area. They found the ants were more active at night instead of during the day in the hours before an earthquake.

Researchers have reviewed hundreds of reports like this, but most were just anecdotes—single observations that cannot be tested or repeated.

Where’s the Proof?

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