Can you catch a yawn off a wild animal?

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It’s well-known that yawning is contagious. Dogs will even respond to a yawning owner by producing a yawn of their own, thought to be an indication they are capable of cross-species empathy. But what about the other way round? What does it mean if you catch a yawn off a wild animal like a ?

A in National Park, India. Photograph: Paul Goldstein/Exodus/REX

A resting its spots. Photograph: Paul Goldstein/Exodus/REX

in Spitsbergen, Norway. Photograph: Paul Goldstein/Exodus/REX

Serval kitten in the Masai Mara, Kenya. Photograph: Paul Goldstein/Exodus/REX

A seal making good use of its flipper. Photograph: Paul Goldstein/Exodus/REX

A lioness in the Masai Mara, Kenya. Photograph: Paul Goldstein/Exodus/REX

This article was written by for the Guardian.

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Mikal Deese

As a rehabilitator, I spend most of my time with wild birds. And yes, I’ve caught yawns from the birds. Go figure!

Wai Ling  Liu

nice thanks