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Unusual Animals

Kulbhushaan Raghuvanshi
The concept of unusual animals has been known to man for quite some time now. The term unusual animals consists of animals with strange shapes and characteristics, which also includes a few hybrid animals.
This world is full of strange and unusual things. The hunger for discovering new things never slows down. Since evolution, man has come a long way. Humans have set a benchmark in making new inventions and trying to make the world a better place to live in. The factor which has not yet been discovered entirely, is nature.
We are still far from understanding its beauty and functionality, and understanding the animals who make it their habitat. Mentioned here are some of the rarest animals in nature and their different characteristics.

Unusual Animals of the World

Animals have been in this world for more than a million years. You must be knowing most of them, but you still haven't seen them all. Mentioned below are some unusual animals and the places where they are found.
Capybara (South America): When you see the capybara for the first time, you are bound to mistake it for a guinea pig. However, it is not a guinea pig at all. It has small eyes and is called the world's largest rodent. It has webbed feet which make it an excellent swimmer. The capybara spends most of its time near small water bodies or with others of its own kind.
Echnidna (Australia, New Guinea, and Tasmania): It has a very distinctive spine. The echnidna is one of the two monotremes (egg laying mammals) living on the face of the earth, the other being the platypus. It lives alone most of the time, burrowing in the ground. Its main food is insects, which it catches easily with the help of its long, sticky tongue. A normal echnidna grows up to 18 inches long.
Bongo (Africa): The bongo resembles an antelope. Found only in Africa, it is known for its gracefully-shaped spiral horns and amazing striped head. Considered timid and mostly nocturnal, the bongo is one of Africa's most mysterious animals and is the largest of all the antelopes in the world.
Jerboa (Africa and Asia): The jerboa has long and sturdy hind legs which help it to jump long distances. Often known as the 'jumping wonder', it can leap more than ten feet in a single jump. It uses its long tail to help maintain balance, and it never drinks water. The jerboa relies on the moisture content from bugs and plants to quench its thirst. It is found in regions with hot deserts. It is known as the hopping desert rodent.
Okapi (Africa): An okapi is a catch between a giraffe and a zebra. It is related to the giraffe, though its height is only five feet. It's a mammal and has a beautiful red-brown body and some dazzling white and black stripes on its bottom and legs.
Some other strange animals found on earth are as follows.
  • Coconut Crab
  • Civet
  • Red Velvet Ant
  • Aye Aye
  • Kinkajou
  • Tapir
  • Pangolin
  • Sea Pig
  • Mata Mata
  • Leaf Insect

Strange Facts about Animals

As you know, the earth is surrounded by mysterious creatures. We can't go and observe all their mysterious characteristics in person, but can read some unusual animal facts mentioned below and get a gist.
  • If you hold a leopard in captivity, it will live for 12 years, while in the wild it can live up to 10 years due to its excessive hunting.
  • An average beaver can cut down more than 200 trees in its lifetime.
  • A rhinoceros, if held in captivity, may live up to 45 years while in the wild, it may live up to 35 years as it is hunted for its horns and skin.
  • The lifespan of an average hedgehog is 10 years.
  • The approximate weight of an African bison is 900 pounds.
  • The humpback whale has the longest flippers among all mammals.
  • The average size of a newborn kangaroo is that of a coffee bean.
  • A porcupine has more than 30,000 quills on its body.
  • One out of every five thousand north Atlantic lobsters is born with a bright-blue color.
  • Tigers have striped skin, unlike most animals who have striped fur.
  • There are around 2,200 species of frogs. They are found on every continent except Antarctica.
  • Electric eels cannot derive oxygen from water, they have to come to the surface every five minutes to get oxygen. They can swim forwards and backward, which most fish can't.
  • Blue whales weigh 50 pounds when they're born. At adulthood, they weigh as much as 150 tons.
  • The turbot fish lays around 14 million eggs during its lifetime.
  • The largest great white shark caught in New Brunswick in 1930 measured 37 feet and weighed 24,000 pounds.
  • The hummingbird, grebe, loon swift, and kingfisher are all bird species that cannot walk.
  • The only cat in the world that cannot retract its claws is the cheetah.
  • The blue whale is the loudest animal on the earth. The call sound of the blue whale reaches up to 188 decibels. This call can be heard for hundred of miles underwater. The howler monkey is the second loudest animal on earth.
  • Snakes are immune to their own poison.
  • Dolphins sleep just below the surface of the water at night. They frequently rise to the surface for air.
  • At the end of the Beatles song A Day in the Life, an ultrasonic whistle which only dogs could hear was recorded by Sir Paul McCartney for his Shetland sheepdog.
These were some of the unusual animals on earth and some of their characteristic facts. Most of these animals are on the verge of extinction. We must take care and preserve them as they play an important role in maintaining the ecological balance of the earth.