Common Scientific Facts People Believe In That Has Been Disproven.


That a goldfish has a three-second memory.

It's been proved that they have a memory span of at least three months. Or it might be longer. I always forget. (source)


Alpha wolves/dogs.

Wolves are not constantly fighting for dominance among each other. Their packs are more like nuclear families with the "alphas" being the two parents and the rest of the wolves being their children. The dominance theory misconception came about when scientists took a bunch of random wolves and threw them together. As expected, the wolves fought with each other and formed a hierarchy to keep things civil. Of course, this is not how wolf packs would be formed in the wild. (source)


Nearly every student (I teach elementary) that comes through my classroom believes that our blood is blue. It is almost always the most heated discussion we ever have in science... they're like, but Miss Teacher, look at our veins, they're blue, see? Fact proven, discussion over, just.... ugh.

It makes my (not blue) blood boil. (source)


That glass is liquid.

You don't hear this much anymore, but it was commonly taught to people 20, 30 years ago. The idea came from old window glass, because it was thicker at the bottom - people thought that glass still "flowed" slowly over time (continued on the next page...). 

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Total bull - that was just how old glass was blown, and obviously you put the thicker part on the bottom. But I remember meeting physics majors who were convinced of this. (source)


In Korean culture, there's a widely spread "fact" that leaving a fan on at night while you sleep could kill you by causing hypothermia. After conducting numerous experiments on myself, nothing has happened. (source)


That birds will reject their young if they have human scent. Most birds have the crappiest sense of smell and probably reject their young because they hate them. (source)


That if you put a frog in water and heat it slowly, the frog doesn't notice it and boils to death. In fact, the frog will just jump out. (source)


Cutting your hair will have it grow back faster and thicker. Neither is true (continued on the next page...).

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I heard this myth comes from the fact that when you cut your hair you cut the finer ends of the strands and are left with the thicker roots, which makes it feel thicker. (source)


That daddy longlegs are the super venomous, but their fangs aren't long enough to penetrate our skin. Daddy longlegs don't produce venom. (source)


That the tongue has specific regions for taste of specific things. (source)


That sloths grab their own arms and fall to their death. (source)



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Swallowing eight spiders in your sleep every year. (source)



Breaking up is hard to do.

And when you get the law involved, it's even worse. But sometimes people don't need the law's help to make things overcomplicated, they just have a grand ole time making that happen themselves.

People on the front lines of human cruelty include divorce lawyers. These are their stories.

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