2. Babirusa, meaning “Hog-deer”, are members of the pig family found
in Wallacea, or specifically the Indonesian islands of Sulawesi,
Togian, Sula and Buru. If a babirusa does not grind its tusks
(achievable through regular activity), they will eventually keep growing
so as to penetrate the animal’s own skull.
3. The pink fairy armadillo is approximately 3.5-4.5 inches long,
excluding the tail, and is pale rose or pink in color. It has the
ability to bury itself completely in a matter of seconds if frightened.
It is a nocturnal animal and it burrows small holes near ant colonies
in dry soil, and feeds mainly on ants and ant larvae near its burrow.
It uses large front claws to agitate the sand, allowing it to almost
swim through the ground like it is water. It is torpedo-shaped, and has a
shielded head and back.
4. The fossa is a cat-like, carnivorous mammal that is endemic to
Madagascar. The fossa is the largest mammalian carnivore on the island
of Madagascar and has been compared to a small cougar. It has
semi-retractable claws and flexible ankles that allow it to climb up and
down trees head-first, and also support jumping from tree to tree.
5. The gerenuk, also known as the Waller’s gazelle, is a long-necked
species of antelope found in dry thorn bush scrub and desert in Eastern
Africa. The word gerenuk comes from the Somali language, meaning
“giraffe-necked”. Gerenuks have a relatively small head for their body,
but their eyes and ears are proportionately large. Gerenuks seldom
graze but browse on prickly bushes and trees, such as acacias. They can
reach higher branches and twigs than other gazelles and antelope by
standing erect on their rear legs and stretching their elongated necks.
6. The Naked Mole Rat. This creature has a lot of characteristics
that make it very important to human beings. For one it is resistant to
cancer. They also live up to 28 years, which is unheard of in mammals
of its size. It seemingly does not age much in those 28 years either.
It remains “young, healthy and fully fertile for almost all its days,
which for an elderly animal is equivalent to an 80-year-old woman having
the biological make-up of someone 50 years younger.” The naked mole
rat is used in both cancer research and the study of aging. Not only
making it a bizarre creature, but an incredibly important creature as
7. The Irrawaddy dolphin is a species of oceanic dolphin found near
sea coasts and in estuaries and rivers in parts of the Bay of Bengal and
Southeast Asia. Genetically, the Irrawaddy dolphin is closely related
to the killer whale.
8. The markhor is a large species of wild goat that is found in
northeastern Afghanistan and Pakistan. The species is classed by the
IUCN as Endangered, as there are fewer than 2,500 mature individuals.
The markhor is the national animal of Pakistan. While chewing the cud, a
foam-like substance comes out of its mouth which drops on the ground
and dries. This foam-like substance is sought after by the local people,
who believe it is useful in extracting snake poison from snake bitten
9. Also known as the Kiwaidae, this crab is a type of marine decapod
living at deep-sea hydrothermal vents and cold seeps. The animals are
commonly referred to as “yeti crabs” because of their claws and legs,
which are white and appear to be furry like the mythical yeti
10. Snub-nosed monkeys live in various parts of Asia and get their
name from the short stump of a nose on their round face. Snub-nosed
monkeys inhabit mountain forests, in the winter moving into deeply
secluded regions. They spend the majority of their life in the trees and
live together in very large groups of up to 600 members. They have a
large vocal repertoire, calling sometimes solo while at other times
together in choir-like fashion.
11. The Maned Wolf is the largest canid in South America, resembling
a large fox with reddish fur. This mammal is found in open and
semi-open habitats, especially grasslands with scattered bushes and
trees throughout South America. The maned wolf is the tallest of the
wild canids and it’s long legs are most likely an adaptation to the tall
grasslands of its native habitat.
12. The southern right whale dolphin is a small and slender species
of mammal found in cool waters of the southern hemisphere. They are
fast active swimmers and have no visible teeth and no dorsal fin. They
are very graceful and often move by leaping out of the water
13. Southern Red Muntjac. Found in south Asia, it has soft, short,
brownish or greyish hair and is omnivorous, feeding on grass, fruits,
shoots, seeds, birds’ eggs as well as small animals. It sometimes even
displays scavenging behavior, feeding on carrion. It gives calls similar
to barking, usually upon sensing a predator. Males are extremely
territorial and—despite their diminutive size—can be quite fierce. They
will fight each other for territory using their antlers or their
tusk-like upper canine teeth, and can even defend themselves against
certain predators such as dogs.
14. It is a species of treehopper called Cyphonia Clavata that
literally has an ant growing out of its head. Well not literally, the
ant-like thing on its head is an appendage that hides the treehopper’s
actual body from predators.
15. Also known as The Sunda flying lemur, the Sunda Colugo is not
actually a lemur and does not fly. Instead, it glides as it leaps among
trees. It is strictly arboreal, is active at night, and feeds on soft
plant parts such as young leaves, shoots, flowers, and fruits. The
Sunda Coluga can be found throughout Southeast Asia in Indonesia,
Thailand, Malaysia, and Singapore
16. The Tufted Deer is a small species of deer characterized by the
prominent tuft of black hair on its forehead. It is a close relative of
the muntjac, living somewhat further north over a wide area of central
China. It is a timid animal, mainly solitary or found in pairs and
prefers places with good cover, where it is well camouflaged.
17. Lampreys are a type of jawless fish that live mostly in coastal
and fresh waters whose adults are characterized by a toothed,
funnel-like sucking mouth. They attach themselves to fish and suck
their blood. Lampreys have been around for nearly 300 millions years
and their body structure has remained relatively unchanged.
18. The Raccoon Dog, or Tanuki, is a canid indigenous to East Asia.
The raccoon dog is named for its resemblance to the raccoon, to which
it is not closely related. They are very good climbers and regularly
19. The Patagonian Mara is a relatively large rodent found in parts
of Argentina. This herbivorous, somewhat rabbit-like animal has
distinctive long ears and long limbs and its hind limbs are longer and
more muscular than its forelimbs.
20. The Amazonian Royal Flycatcher is found in forests and woodlands
throughout most of the Amazon basin. They are about 6 1/2 inches in
length and like to dart out from branches to catch flying insects or
pluck them from leaves. They build very large nests (sometimes up to 6
feet long) on a branches near water. The nest hangs over the water which
makes it hard for predators to reach.
21. The zebra duiker is a small antelope found in Ivory Coast and
other parts of Africa. They have gold or red-brown coats with
distinctive zebra-like stripes (hence the name) Their prong-like horns
are about 4.5 cm long in males, and half that in females. They live in
lowland rainforests and mostly eat leaves and fruit.
22. The star-nosed mole is a small mole found in wet low areas of
eastern Canada and the northeastern United States. It is easily
identified by the 11 pairs of pink fleshy appendages ringing its snout,
which is used as a touch organ with more than 25,000 minute sensory
receptors, known as Eimer’s organs, with which this hamster-sized mole
feels its way around.
The gerenuk and the raccoon dog are welcome in my house any time, but the star-nose mole can go away. Not welcome.
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