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The platypus apparently is a surprisingly deep sleeper Whats more it spends more of its time in so-called REM sleep than any other mammal These are the conclusions of a study on sleep in the platypus by Jerry M Siegel of the Sepulveda Veterans Affairs Medical Center North Hills California and colleagues Their report appears in a special number of Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society devoted to the biology of the platypus Ornithorhynchus anatinus celebrating the bicentenary of the discovery in Australia of this remarkable animal REM stands for rapid eye-movement and is the kind of sleep in which the brain can be more active than in it is while awake the animal twitches and the eyelids flicker hence the name In humans REM sleep is associated with dreaming But does the platypus have an extraordinarily rich dream life Possibly not say the researchers cats opossums armadillos and other mammals not known for their intellectual achievements have far more REM sleep whether calculated in hours per day or
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