15 Animals Who Invented Social Distancing

‘Red pandas tend to interact only for mating purposes’—actually, that sounds ideal right now

Laura Vincent
Mar 18 · 5 min read
Photo: Diana Parkhouse via Unsplash

Getting stuck in a Wikipedia rabbit hole — clicking from page to page as you absorb layers of information you didn’t anticipate wanting in the first place — is a true simple pleasure of modern life. It was one such Wikipedia browsing session that inspired this list; in turn, as well as hopefully making you smile, I’ve linked to the pages of each animal to spur on your own perusal should you be staying home for reasons of public safety, and needing a low-stakes diversion to occupy yourself.

As always, we have so much to learn from the animal kingdom — here are fifteen creatures who are all about the isolation.

Credit: Charles Dessalines D’ Orbigny via RawPixel

1. The Golden Mole of South Africa

Photo: Gary L. Clark via Wikimedia Commons/CC BY-SA 4.0

2. The Little Tinamou

Credit: Charles Dessalines D’ Orbigny via RawPixel

3. The Jaguar

Photo: 127071 via Pixabay

4. The Chinese Muntjac

Credit: John James Audubon via RawPixel

5. The Solitary Sandpiper

Photo: kuhnmi via Flickr/CC BY 2.0

6. The Moose

Photo: Helena via RawPixel

7. The Red Panda

Photo: Rhys Asplundh via Flickr/CC BY 2.0

8. The Screaming Hairy Armadillo

Credit: John Gerrard Keulemans via National Library NZ on The Commons/Flickr/public domain

9. The Roroa

Photo: Marcel Langthim via Pixabay

10. The Bear

Credit: RawPixel

11. The Octopus

Credit: Unknown via Wikimedia Commons/public domain

12. The Tamarisk Jird

Photo: Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife via Flickr/CC BY-SA 2.0

13. The American Badger

Photo: Summer Anne Burton

14. The Sloth

Illustration: R. Mintern via Wikimedia Commons/public domain

15. The Bony-Eared Assfish

Photo: Laura Vincent

A bonus animal: my parents’ resolutely unfriendly cat Poppy. On any given day she can be found squashed into this corner of the couch, deliberately facing away from everyone. If Poppy could work out a way to live 14,485 feet below sea level with only the Bony-Eared Assfish for company, I’m sure she’d gladly do it. Truly a queen of social distancing.


A friendly + radical vegan magazine dedicated to living…

Laura Vincent

Written by

Food blogger and author from New Zealand. Writing at hungryandfrozen.com; Twitter at @hungryandfrozen; and exclusive stuff at Patreon.com/hungryandfrozen.



A friendly + radical vegan magazine dedicated to living well with kindness towards animals, care for the planet, and justice for all.

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