The world has more living creatures than most people know. In fact, the total number of species that we know is just the tip of the iceberg. There are thousands more out there whose names people still have not heard of, either because they are too hidden to be found or because their population is too small. Here is a list of 25 bizarre animals you probably have never heard of before:
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Also known as “trenggiling” or “scaly anteater,” pangolin is a mammal that belongs to the order Pholidota. It is called scaly anteater because o the thick and large keratin scales that cover its entire body. This animal is naturally found in tropical regions like Asia and Africa.
This African antelope literally means “rock jumper” in Africa. Also called “myundla,” it is mostly found in the mountainous regions of Southern Africa and Ethiopia. It is a herbivore that is usually preyed upon by eagles and leopards.
The potto is a Lorisidae primate that is also known by the name “Bosman’s potto.” Also called a “softly-softly,” this animal is covered with grey-brown woolly fur and has opposable thumbs that allow it to grasp branches firmly.
Mostly found in the eastern and northern parts of mainland Australia, the sugar glider is a small nocturnal gliding possum that belongs to the infraclass marsupial. Its name is sugar glider because it prefers sugary nectarous foods and it resembles the flying squirrel when it glides through the air.
This fox is a small nocturnal fox that resides in the Sahara Desert of North Africa. It is characterized by its unusually gigantic ears, which help in dissipating heat. The name of this animal comes from the Arabic word fanak which means fox. It is known to be the smallest species of canid in the world today, and the functions of its organs are very well adaptable to low-water, desert and high temperature environments.
This small mole is mainly found in the wet low areas of the northeastern part of the United States as well as eastern Canada. Some of its relatives are also found along the Atlantic coast and Georgia. It can be easily identified because of its 11 pairs of pink fleshy appendages that surround its snout.
This small antelope mainly resides in the Ivory Coast, though it can also be found in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. It is characterized by its red brown coats and distinctive stripes that resemble those of a zebra. It also has dark markings on its upper legs and horns that resemble a prong.
Amazonian Royal Flycatcher
A passerine bird, the Amazonian royal flycatcher is regarded as a close relative of the tyrant flycatcher. It is found throughout the woodlands and forests of the Amazon basin in Guianas, Venezuala, Colombia, Peru and north of Bolivia. This bird is also commonly found in low densities. Because of its high population, it has recently classed among the “Least Concern” of Bird Life International.
Also known as the magnut, the raccoon dog is an indigenous dog found in East Asia. Considered the only extant species under the genus Nyctereutus, this dog is a basal candid dog that resembles the ancestral forms of its relatives. It is known to regularly climb trees like the gray fox of Northern America.
Sometimes called lamprey eels, the lamprey is a jawless fish that is characterized by its funnel-like and toothed sucking mouth. It derived its name from the Latin term “lampetra” which means “stone licker.” Most lampreys are not parasitic and do not feed on fish. Physically, it resembles eels but it has no scales. Its body can range from 13 to 100 centimeters in length.
The tufted deer can be identified through the tuft of black hair on its forehead. It is also characterized by its fang-like canines. A close relative of the muntjac, this animal resides in the northeastern part of Myanmar and central part of China. It is not yet considered endangered, although it is now suffering from habitat loss overhunting.
Also known as the Sunda flying lemur or the Malayan flying lemur, the sunda colugo is a species of colugo that is found in several parts of Southeast Asia, particularly in Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia. Though it was initially believed to be a lemur, it is not a lemur and it does not fly. It is dependent on forests and constantly glides and leaps among trees.
The cyphonia clavata is an ant-like immobile insect that lives in the middle and southern part of Africa. It looks like an ant because of the protrusion that extends from its pronotum. Its main body is also buried under a large antlike-shaped shell. The only thing that sets it apart from an ant is its pale coloration.
Southern Red Muntjac
More commonly known as the Indian muntjac or red muntjac, this animal is characterized by its brownish, short and soft hair with creamy markings. Unlike other species, it is omnivorous. It can feed on small animals, eggs, grass, fruits and seeds. This animal is also known for its occasional scavenging behavior, especially when it is hungry.
Southern Right Whale Dolphin
This dolphin is a slender and small species of dolphin that is commonly found in the cool and deep waters of the southern hemisphere, where it is the only dolphin that has no dorsal fins. This animal is also known for its slim yet graceful body. Its flippers are mainly white in color and are usually small and curved.
The maned wolf is known as the largest canid in South America. Its physical features resemble those of a large fox with long fur. Mostly found in open habitats like grasslands, this animal are often seen scattered in the open spaces of Brazil, Argentina, Bolivia and Paraguay. IUCN has recently listed it under the “near threatened” class.
This group of old world monkeys is mostly found in southern China, particularly in Guizhou, Yunnan, Tibet and Sichuan. It got its name from its most notable physical feature, which is its short stump of nose and nostrils positioned forward. Its fur comes in many colors and is long especially at the back and shoulder areas.
A wild species of wild goat, the markhor resides in the Middle East, particularly in the northeastern part of Afghanistan and the northern part of Pakistan. It is an endangered species of animal that currently has just about 2,500 mature individuals around the world. It is also known to have the highest maximum shoulder height in the genus Capra.
This dolphin is an oceanic dolphin that resides along the sea costs and estuaries and rivers of the Bay of Bengal and Southeast Asia. Its physical traits resemble the beluga, though experts say it is more closely related to the killer whale than the beluga. The Irrawaddy dolphin has long and broad flippers, as well as a large melon.
Naked Mole Rat
Also called “sand puppy” or “desert mole rat,” the naked mole rat is the only species of rodent that is classified in the genus Heterocephallus. It is basically a burrowing rodent that resides in some of the major parts of East Africa. The physical traits of this animal enable it to thrive even in the harshest underground environment. Its skin has lack of pain sensation and it has very low respiratory rate.
Crowed as the “Queen of Humbleness” in many ancient African tribal tales, the gerenuk is also known as the “Waller’s gazelle” and looks like a long necked species of antelope. This animal resides in the dry thorn bushes and deserts in eastern Ethiopia, Eastern Africa and other neighboring countries.
Endemic to Madagascar, Fossa is a carnivorous mammal that looks like a cat. It is a member of the Eupleridae family, which is somewhat related to the Mongoose family. It is considered the largest mammalian carnivore in the whole of the island of Madagascar, and is often compared to a small cougar.
Pink Fairy Armadillo
Known as the smallest species of armadillo, the pink fairy armadillo has a body that is approximately 90-115 millimeters in length, excluding the tail. It is called pink fairy armadillo because its body is pale rose or pink in color. What makes this animal special is that it can bury itself completely in just a few seconds when it is scared.
The babirusa is commonly found in Wallace and in most Indonesian islands, including Sula, Togian, Buru and Sulawesi. One of its most notable characteristics is its long upper canines, which emerge vertically from the alveolar process.
Also known as the “Asiatic wild dog” or “Indian wild dog,” the dhole is a member of the genus Cuon but is different from Canis because it has less molars and greater teats. The Dhole is a highly social animal that has recently been classed as “endangered” by the IUCN.