Can animals predict earthquakes?

So far, scientists have been unable to find consistent and reliable animal behavior patterns before earthquakes. Scientists have also had trouble finding any sort of "signals" that animals might detect to alert them — if they had, you can bet that scientists would be vigilantly detecting those signals, too! Most, but not all, scientists pursuing this mystery are in China or Japan.

The earliest reference we have to unusual animal behavior prior to a significant earthquake is from Greece in 373 BC. Rats, weasels, snakes, and centipedes reportedly left their homes and headed for safety several days before a destructive earthquake. Anecdotes abound of animals, fish, birds, reptiles, and insects exhibiting strange behavior anywhere from weeks to seconds before an earthquake.

Contributing source: USGS

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