Animals That Rarely Sleep

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Animal that Rarely Sleep!

From wide-awake birds, giraffes, and horses … to sleepless seals, cetaceans, and sharks … Here are 15 animals that RARELY Sleep!

#15 Cows
There are some animals that seem like they should always sleep standing up. Several are on the list, and cows are among them. Yet the bovine beasts will lie down when it’s time to sleep. In total, they’ll sleep for about 4 hours a day, in naps that last up to four minutes. Cows can actually spend up to 14 hours during the day lying down, but they’re not always asleep. The animals will get up every few hours before resting again. Since they don’t sleep standing up, that means the idea of tipping a cow over is just an urban legend.

#14 Ostriches
The sleep pattern of this big flightless bird is said to resemble the platypus. But while the Australian monotreme can sleep for 14 hours a day, the Ostrich typically sleeps about six. It usually sleeps with both eyes open while standing upright. In that state it can stay alert for threats, while at the same time resting its body and brain. Ostriches can also enter a deeper mode of sleep that is characterized by the bird putting down its head for around 15 minutes. For the record, they’re not burying their heads in the sand when they do this. That behavior has been long been proven to be a myth!

#13 Giraffes
If you’ve never seen one of these long-necked creatures lying down or getting back up, it looks through quite a process they’re going through. Basically, the animal kneels on its front legs, and lowers its body to rest over those folded limbs. In captivity, giraffes have been documented to sleep more than 4 and-a-half hours, usually in increments at night. Older specimens have been noted to sleep while standing, which is common in the wild due to the threat of predators. Sometimes they enter a sleep phase where they are deeply resting, but demonstrate reduced muscle activity and rapid eye movement.

#12 Seals
These animals will usually sleep with half of their brain awake, which is vital given how much time they spend in the water. The side that’s awake keeps a lookout for threats and allows them to escape from predators. Experts say they’re typically oriented belly-side up and slowly drift downward as they doze for a few minutes periodically. When they’re on land, both sides of the seal’s brain will enter into a deep sleep.

#11 Walruses
Since we mentioned seals, let’s also shout-out their fellow pinnipeds. These blubbery marine mammals can weigh more than 4,400 pounds (2,000 kg). Along with their size, they’re easily identified by their whiskers and prominent tusks. They look like the type of animal that would sleep away much of their day. Actually, they do sleep a lot. But Walruses are known for their habits of sleeplessness, too. Like some other animals we’ve mentioned, they can sleep while swimming. If they need a longer rest, they can inflate pharyngeal (fare-uhn-jee-ul) pouches inside their body that keep them afloat in the water like a life jacket. That keeps their head above water for air as they snooze. If they really need to crash out, walruses use their tusks to anchor themselves onto a stable piece of ice. While these animals can sleep for up to 19 hours straight, they don’t need to sleep every day. Researchers say they can stay awake and swim nonstop for more than 72 hours at a stretch!

#10 Great Frigatebirds
Researchers suspected for some time that birds can sleep while they’re flying. Now there’s proof of the phenomenon. Scientists monitored the brainwaves of Great Frigate birds from the Galapagos Islands over the course of ten days. Turns out that the birds could be half asleep but would keep one eye open (literally) to monitor potential threats. The behavior is technically called ‘unihemispheric sleep’. Results showed that the test subjects slept for around 42 minutes a day while flying. But when they’re on land the birds can sleep up to 12 hours a day!

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