Weird Facts about Animals: There are that many different types of animals, many of which people won’t get to see in real life
It isn’t surprising then that are lots of interesting facts that may not be common knowledge. However, while there are is a wealth of information on every animal you can think of, there are also plenty of weird facts about animals that many people would find hard to believe.
Lions and Tigers and Bears…
There aren’t many people who can say they have been up close and personal with lion, therefore the majority of us have to rely on second-hand information to learn more about this majestic animal.
While the lion is often depicted prowling around revelling being in charge of his pride – it is actually the lioness that has much of the authority.
Not only is the lioness the head of each individual lion “family”, she also does 90-percent of the roaring.
The lion may be considered by humans as the “king of the jungle” but he isn’t the hunter gatherer, that job is also left down to the lioness whose job it is to bring food back for the lion and any cubs they share.
Lions have a habit of sniffing porcupines; unfortunately this often leads to the sharp quills of the animal becoming lodged in the lion’s jaw, sometimes for life, making eating uncomfortable.
Respected and feared in equal measure, tigers are also amongst the most loved animals in the world. It may not seem like it but tigers are heavier and generally bigger than their cat relatives the lion.
The proper name for a group of tigers is a streak although this is a rare occurrence as tigers are extremely solitary creatures that prefer to hunt alone.
Domestic cats may be afraid of water but tigers most certainly are not. Not only have tigers been witnessed swimming long distances, they have, weirdly enough, been known to drag weighty prey as far as five miles in the water.
However, this image could not be further from the truth, as most bears are ferocious and potentially deadly.
A male bear is known as a boar and a female bear is called a sow, exactly the same as pigs although they bear no relation to each other.
The gall bladder of a bear is considered extremely valuable in Chinese medicine and it regularly sells for higher prices than gold in certain Asian countries.
Unfortunately, this has had a knock on effect on some species, with the Asiatic and Sloth bear now officially labelled endangered.
Fishes in the Water
No article on weird facts about animals would be complete without mentioning sharks.
Perhaps the weirdest things about the shark and most definitely one of the lesser known facts about them are that some species bark like a dog.
As well as having no skeleton, sharks do not have one single bone in their entire bodies, their skin is made up entirely of cartilage – the rubbery component that makes up part of the human ear.
In some countries, shoes made from shark skin are extremely popular. While pricier than your average shoe, shark-skin shoes last around four-times longer than shoes made from other material.
Most species of shark give birth to their young, as oppose to laying eggs. The average shark has around five babies each time, although the tiger and hammerhead shark have up to 40 babies from one pregnancy.
As well as having razor sharp teeth, piranha’s can actually taste the blood of their prey. Known for being aggressive, piranha fish feed in packs and the feeding is often frenzied and quick.
As well as other fish, insects and snails, piranha will eat virtually any type of mammal that may have accidentally fallen into the water. A scary little fish, the piranha has few predators although they do have to look out for crocodiles and turtles. Most commonly found in the Amazon and Guyana river systems, piranhas are more feared then sharks in these areas.
Strangely enough, the river system in San Francisco is also a piranha breeding ground.
One of the biggest members of the bird family is the Ostrich and although evolution has taken away this bird’s right to fly, an ostrich can run at an average speed of 45 mph.
The penguin is another bird that cannot fly, however the penguin’s streamlined body and ultra-powerful flippers mean it is the fastest swimming species of bird in existence.
Penguins love eating shrimp, shellfish and squid however, they only like to eat their prey live, avoiding any dead fish they may find in the water.
Not surprising really is the fact that the most common type of bird is the chicken.
The bird most likely to be kept as a pet is the parrot. The smallest parrots in the world are called pygmy parrots and measure a tiny eight centimetres. The largest and possibly most majestic looking parrot is the Hyacinth Macaw that, when measured from the beak to the end of its tail feathers, measures an impressive 40 inches.
Generally a bird’s feathers, regardless of the type of bird it is, will weigh more than its skeleton.
And if you ever wondered why a bird’s beak changes so rapidly between species then you will be interested to know that the beak corresponds with the type of diet that particular bird eats.
Many people believe that the flying fish are related to the bird family, this isn’t true.
In fact, anything without feathers is not considered a bird.
A flying fish has gills that look like wings but the animal’s flight is restricted and is only designed to help with feeding.
There are a million and one other weird facts about animals, some being stranger than others but it is impossible to list them all in there entirety.
While humans may be constantly amazed at just what the animal kingdom is capable of, it is also clear that many of these species are with us today due to the hard work of people who know everything there is to know about our animal friends.
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