Strange, interesting facts about sleep you probably didn’t know! World Napping Day

The Monday after March’s Daylight Savings is established as the World Napping Day. As you can imagine, there is a good reason for that as this is a very good opportunity to adjust your sleep cycle from the lost hour of sleep during the previous night due to “springing forward”.

Futurama Insomnia
Of course it’s also a good opportunity to check out some amazing and strange facts about sleep that you probably ignored.

It’s well known that humans need approximate 8 hours of sleep and you won’t believe how much different, sleeping states can be for different species.

Let’s see together 10 interesting facts about sleep:

1. The Little Brown Bat is the sleepiest animal. It spends around 20 hours a day sleeping!

Baby bats

2. On the other hand, the animal that has the record of sleeping the least is the Giraffe. On average Giraffes sleep around only 2 hours a day.
Baby giraffe sleeping

3. Dolphins and whales sleep only with half their brain at a time and with one eye open!
Smiling dolphin
This is essential as they have to come up to the surface for air and also protect themselves against shark attacks. In fact this behavior is also common in birds, ducks, seals, iguanas and many other animals.

4. Giraffes can go on for weeks without having any sleep!
Giraffes with sunglasses

5. It may sound funny but some animals have to wake from hibernation to get some sleep.
Polar Bear sleeping
The reason might be that the animals need to raise their temperature to allow sleep (hibernation is different from sleep).

6. The world record for longest period someone stayed awake is 11 days.
Cat Insomnia

The Guiness World Records has actually stopped keeping track of such records as voluntary sleep deprivatioν, poses great health risks!

7. Bats sleep upside down so they can start flying immediately if a predator appears!
Bat sleeping
Their wings are too weak for them to take off from a standing position.

8. Even though most people don’t know it, Ants sleep too!
tired sleepy ant
A study showed that worker ants in a colony experienced around 250 sleeping intervals during a day, each one lasting about 1 minute!

9. We sleep less around a full moon even if we sleep in windowless rooms and no moonlight comes in!
baby sleeping moonlight

10. Sea otters will often hold hands while sleeping so that they don’t drift away from each other!
Sea otters sleeping holding hands


Next time you feel like taking a nap, don’t feel guilty. World Napping Day and science are by your side 🙂