'/> Amazing Animals: April 2012

Monday, April 30, 2012

Strange Facts About Insects

Some things you’ve got to know about insects.

* According to studies, half of all known animals are insects.

* Insect is a good source of protein so in several countries it is a delicacy.

* Majority of insects use their antennae in search of food.

* Insects are the cold-blooded animals.

* All insects have jointed legs, 3 pairs to be exact.

* Insects can lift objects 50 times or more its natural weight.

Here are other facts about insects:


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* Almost 1/3 of all known insects are beetles.

* A 100 gram African Goliath beetle is the heaviest insect in the world.

* The South American Acteon Beetle holds the record for the biggest known insect. The males can grow up to 9cms long. * The hairy winged beetles are the tiniest insects in the world.

* Believe it or not 278 Japanese beetles were once found on a single apple.


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* 15 miles per hour at an average, that‘s how fast a bee can fly.

* A worker bee can generate 1/12th teaspoon of honey in its entire life span.

* In order to produce a tablespoon of honey, bees need to be busy sipping the nectar from 2,000 flowers.

* More human death are attributed to honeybees sting than all poisonous snakes bite.

* A bee’s buzz is generated by moving its wings at a rate of 11,400 strokes per minute.

* A bee can sting only once then dies after it pulled-out its stinger.


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* A baby cockroach can run side by side with its parents.

* A head-less cockroach can survive for a week but dies of thirst because it can’t drink water.

* Cockroaches can survive for a month eating nothing but have only a week to live without water.

* The world’s largest cockroach found in South America is the world’s biggest cockroach measuring six inches and a one-foot wingspan.

* The Madagascan Hissing Cockroach (shown in photo) is one of the few insects who give birth to live young, rather than laying eggs.


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* Believe it or not, ants stay awake all their life.

* Ants have to move their jaws sideways just to chew its meal.

* An ant colony can housed half a million individuals.

* Amazon ants (red ants found in the western U.S.) who are good warriors have to snatch other ants larvae to make them slaves. In so doing, Amazon ants can’t survive without their slaves.

* Certain honey-pot ants become a colony’s warehouse. Their bloated abdomen produces a liquid food that serve as food to other individuals living in a colony.

* The fire ant, who grows as big as a grain of rice has a sting that is worse than a hornet’s sting.


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* Crickets sense of hearing comes from their knees.

* Take note only adult male crickets are capable of making a chirp.

* Crickets chirp is a product of rubbing its wings together.

* Some crickets are intelligent, they make a conical-shaped hole that help amplify the sound of their chirps allowing it to be heard as far as 2,000 feet away.

* Crickets are good temperature reader. People know whether its hot or cold depending on the chirps crickets make.


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* According to studies, majority of human death caused by animals is due to mosquito bite * Mosquitoes feet are irritated by citronella, so they hate it much.

* Mosquitoes will likely bite children and blondes.

* Don’t worry about male mosquitoes, only the females bite. They need blood protein to produce eggs.

* It would take more than a million mosquito bite to sap all your blood.


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* Common diseases such typhoid fever, dysentery and cholera are usually associated with a housefly.

* The house fly life span at the most 21 days.

* The housefly complex eye has more than 4,000 lenses.

* House flies hairy and sticky toe pads to walk upside down on the ceiling.

* A house fly “hums” in the key of F and beats its wings over 20,000 beat a minute.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Top Five Shortest Sleeping Animals in The World

Here are the shortest sleeping creatures in the world.

Some animals, like Brown Bats, Giant Armadillo, Night Monkeys and others, spend too much time sleeping. On the other hand, there are animals that spend too little time sleeping. As a matter of fact, according to experts, ‘ANTS’ do not sleep at all. That is extremely bizarre!

Asiatic Elephant –Fifth Shortest Sleeping Animal on Earth

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One of the shortest sleeping animals in the world is the Asiatic Elephant. On the average, the Asiatic Elephant sleeps 16.4% or 3.9 hours only of the day. This creature is Asia’s largest living land animal and can live up to 86 years of age.

Cow – Fifth Shortest Sleeping Animal on Earth

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The Cow ties with the Asiatic Elephant on the 5th place as the shortest sleeping animal in the world. Just the same, it only sleeps for 3.9 hours or 16.4% in a day. One of the most animals ever sold in the world is a Friesian Cow.

Sheep – Fourth Shortest Sleeping Animal in the World

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After grazing all day long, sheep only sleep for 3.8 hours on the average. That is equivalent to 16% of 24 hours. There are more than 1 billion domestic Sheep in the world. China has the greatest number, with more than 136 million.

Donkey – Third Shortest Sleeping Creature on Earth

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A Donkey spends 3.3 hours only sleeping on a day. That is just 13.8% of 24 hours. A Donkey is also known as Ass and in the western part of the US, it is called a Burro. A male Donkey is called a jack and a female is a jenny.

Horse – Second Shortest Sleeping Animal on the Planet

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Human beings tend to sleep longer when they are tired. But Horses, after grazing and running all day, only sleep for 2.9 hours in a day. That is merely 12% of 24 hours. Horses have been domesticated since 4,000 BCE and the only remaining true wild horses are the Przewalski’s Horses.

Giraffe – The World’s Shortest Sleeping Animal

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Yes, Giraffes are the shortest sleeping animals on Earth. On the average, this animal with the longest neck and tail only sleep 1.9 hours in a day. That is equivalent to 7.9% of 24 hours. Ooh, how I wish I am like them… lol… You know why? Well, so that I can publish more articles in a day.

Did you notice that all animals with the shortest sleep are grazing animals? Does it mean that vegetarians don’t sleep long too?

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Popular Domesticated Goose Breeds

A list of the most popular goose breeds that might be of help to soon-to-be geese breeders.

Nowadays, geese breeding is fast becoming a popular past-time activity for many people. Some breed geese just to have a fun of it while others take geese breeding for the monetary benefits it gives. So taking into consideration both aspects of geese breed, it’s very important to know how to choose the right breed of goose. There are several geese breeds, each with its own goose breed characteristics. When it comes to breeding geese are starting to raise geese, it all comes down to finding the right goose breed for you!

For people who are interested in geese breeding, I listed 9 common and popular goose breeds that might help you in starting your own backyard geese hobby!

Chinese Goose Breed

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The Chinese goose breed is one of the more popular goose breed, though they are much smaller than other breeds (except the Egyptian goose). A typical male Chine goose can weigh up to 12 pounds (male) while female Chinese goose can grow up to 10 pounds.

Toulouse Goose Breed

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This goose breed comes from France and is a good source for meat production. The Toulouse is a large goose breed and can easily be identified by its orange goose bill, dark gray feathers and brown eyes. You will be awed by its size that males grow to 26 pounds and female weighs to 20 pounds.

Embden Goose Breed

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This German goose breed is excellent for goose egg layers and is often picked by geese breeders who are interested in egg production. Sporting white plumage, the Emden goose breed is much leaner than the Toulouse goose breed. Males Emden geese can grow up 26 pounds while females can weigh up to 20 pounds.

African Goose Breed

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Though taller than the Toulouse and Emden goose breeds, African goose breed weighs lighter where males can grow up to 20 pounds and female can weigh up to 18 pounds. This breed is a good source for eggs. African goose breed distinctive mark includes: brown plumage, dark beak and a knob on its head.

Canada Goose Breed

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The Canada Goose breed is a much lighter breed compared to other breeds where the average weight for males is 12 pounds. Found mostly in North America, prospective breeders need to apply first for a goose ownership permit from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Buff Goose Breed

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The Buff Geese breed is a good source of meat but not for laying. It has an off-white or sometimes beige colored feathers. Males can weigh up to 18 pounds while females weigh 2 pounds less.

Pilgrim Goose Breed

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If you are looking for a breed that is a good source for meat, then get a Pilgrim goose. Pilgrim goose breed falls under the medium-sized goose breed where the average weight for male is 14 pounds and for female 12 pounds. Take note that males sport white plumage while females are gray.

Sebastopol Goose Breed

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The white Sebastopol goose is raised mostly for ornamental purposes due to its fancy feathers. Sebastopol is a medium-sized goose with long, white curly feathers. The feathers of the neck are smooth and sometimes grayish-brown. Males grow up to 14 lbs while females weigh 10 to12 lbs.

Egyptian Goose Breed

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The Egyptian goose falls under the small goose breeds. They have gray-and-black plumage and are usually raised for ornamental reasons. Males usually weigh 10 lbs. while females grow to 8 lbs.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Europe's 10 Most Swift and Vibrant Dragonflies

Some common dragonfly species of the Northern Hemisphere.

A dragonfly falls under the order Odonata. This insect can easily be distinguished by its large, complex eyes, two pairs of strong transparent wings and a drawn out body. Dragonflies main habitat are lakes, ponds, streams and other wetlands. They usually feed on small insects such as: mosquitoes, bees, flies, ants and butterfly. Adult dragonflies held their wings away from, and perpendicular to, the body when at rest.

Female dragonfly lays eggs in or near water and 90% of its life span is spent beneath the water’s surface in the “nymph” form. There are at least 5500 known species of dragonfly in the world. Below are some of the common species of Northern Hemisphere dragonfly.

The Emperor Dragonfly

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The Emperor Dragonfly (Anax imperator) is a common British dragonfly that owns the largest wingspan. Its wingspan can grow up to 10.5 cm while its body length can reach up to 8 cm. Emperor dragonfly is a strong insect and will always defend its territory. Most likely one can see Emperor dragonfly hovering over water bodies that include rivers, big ponds and canals looking for a meal. Male appears a striking turquoise blue, with green thorax and black stripes decorate its abdomen while the female has a lighter green shade.

The Widow Skimmer

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The Widow Skimmer (Libellula luctuosa) is a popular species that finds its habitat at lakes and ponds across the United States. Female Widow Skimmer shows large dark wing spots along its lower wings and its wing tips are marked with smaller dark spots while males have white spots on its abdomen and white wing spots between the dark wing spots.

The Migrant Hawker

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The Migrant Hawker (Aeshna mixta) is a large species that can measure up to 60 mm long. They can be found in North Africa, Southern and Central Europe to the Baltic region. Male Migrant Hawker’s elongated body can have a turquoise blue, green and brown coloring. The species prefers still or slow-flowing water.

The Norfolk Hawker

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The Norfolk Hawker (Aeshna isosceles) is an extremely rare species of dragonfly in Great Britain. A distinct identification mark of this dragonfly is its yellow triangular mark on the second abdominal segment. Another familiar mark is its green eyes and translucent wings. A common Mediterranean species, Norfolk Hawkers are found in North Africa Southern Europe. Its habitat must include unspoiled grazing marsh dikes, clean freshwater and plenty of aquatic plants.

The Common Darter

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The Common Darter (Sympetrum striolatum) is a common species found in Europe and can live in different types of water bodies. All Common Darter’s legs have a cream or yellow stripe on a black background. Females have light yellow thorax and abdomen and turns to a dark chocolate brown as it grow older. Males exhibit a reddish color as they mature.

The Great Pondhawk

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The Great Pondhawk (Erythemis vesiculosa) is found in still water habitats along the southern border areas and in the central parts of the United States. Males and females Great Pondhawk look similar but males own a much darker markings on the abdomen between the green markings. Also, males have a bright lime green thorax.

The Common Whitetail

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The Common Whitetail (Libellula lydia) is a common species across much of North America has an unusual appearance. The males sport a checkered look having white bodies and translucent wings having brownish-black bands. Females have a brown body and a different pattern of wing spots. Whitetail females can be distinguished by their smaller size, shorter bodies, and white zigzag abdominal stripes.

The Banded Pennant

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The Banded Pennant (Celithemis fasciata) is a common species found mostly in North America. They own an extensive, sharply defined black markings on its wings. Banded Pennant is a small dragonfly that may grow up to 1 1/2 inches. Its habitat includes ponds, lakes and sand bottom lakes ditches.

The Green Darner

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The Green Darner (Anax junius) is one of the largest dragonflies, with males growing up to 75 millimeters and female up to 68 millimeters in length. The distinct identification marks are its green thorax region and a reddish-brown coloration centrally in the abdominal region. Both male and female exhibit light blue abdominal coloration dorsally. Green Darner is mostly found in the northernmost part of the United States (Alaska) and south to Panama. This species prefers still or very slow-moving fresh water, with lots of aquatic vegetation, and can only flourish where there are no predatory fish.

The Broad-bodied Chaser

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The Broad-bodied Chaser (Libellula depressa) is mainly found in Wales and Southern England that could have a 70 millimeters wingspan. They live in near still-water lakes and ponds, hunting for small insects. The female has a brown abdomen with two yellow stripes. The male has a pale blue abdomen. Both the male and female broad-bodied chasers have dark brown, triangular patches at the base of all four wings.

Monday, April 9, 2012

The Funny-looking Philippine Tarsier with Mesmerizing Eyes

Just like 'Master Yoda', (the famous Star War character), this endangered and considered the world’s smallest primate is an international celebrity famous for its weird, funny-looking eyes.

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The Philippine tarsier (Carlito syrichta), known locally as the kupal in Cebuano/Visayan, is an extremely small animal measuring around 85 to 160 millimeters (3.35 to 6.30 in) in height. It weighs 113-142 grams. Its geographic range includes the islands of Bohol, Leyte, Samar, and Mindanao in the Philippines. It can easily be identified by its big, round eyes (considered the biggest amongst mammals) -- 16 mm across, very proportionate to its body size!

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Having eyes that are fixed in its skull poses no threat for this versatile primate. It is gifted with a special neck flexibility -- allowing its head to swivel its head 180 degrees! Furthermore, the Philippine tarsier‘s big eyes provide it with excellent night vision. It has large, constantly moving ears and thin tail primarily used for balance. The thin, rough fur comes in gray to dark brown in color. The toes’ second and third digits have sharp claws typically used for grooming.

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The Philippine tarsier lives in tropical rainforest with dense vegetation and trees that offer it protection such as bamboo shoots, bushes and tall grasses. A nocturnal animal, it feeds primarily on live insects, particularly crickets and grasshoppers. Often, the Philippine tarsier consumes spiders, lizards, and birds. A wily hunter, it jumps on unsuspecting prey and using both its hand carries it to its mouth.

This tiny animal uses diverse means of communication. Studies have shown that it produces three different audible calls. First a "loud call" resembling an intense single note. On a jolly mood, it releases a soft, sweet birdlike trill. During group communication, they emit a chirping, locust-like sound. Recent findings have revealed that tarsier's vocalization in an ultrasound frequency range of 70 KHz and its finely tuned ears is capable of picking up frequencies above 90 kHz. By comparison, humans generally can’t hear anything above 20 kHz.

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The females gestation period lasts about 6 months. Giving birth to a single offspring. In its natural habitat, the Philippine tarsiers can live up to 24 years. Its population is declining due to habitat loss; and if no action is taken, this gentle animal is on the brink of extinction. Currently, the Philippine government has launched various initiatives, including establishing a forest reserve on the island of Bohol; to protect and manage the tarsier sanctuary and setting up a wildlife research laboratory .

Sunday, April 8, 2012

15 Surprising Animal Facts, You Probably Don’t Know

Here is a list of some amazing animal facts that I figured you too would love – after all, we all love animals!


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Even their poor eyesight and being colorblind can’t stop hamsters in performing one remarkable feat — these stout-bodied, short-tailed cute rodents can blink one eye at a time!

Spitting Spider

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The spitting spider is such a wily hunter; it has a remarkable way of catching its prey. It doesn’t wait for prey to get trapped in its web; it spits out a poisonous silk (coming from special glands in its head and abdomen) that capture the prey where it stands

Nine-banded Armadillo

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The Nine-banded Armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus), has an amazing way in producing offspring. This timid, armored animal is the only mammal that always gives birth to identical quadruplets (4 babies that come from one egg)! Imagine how many offspring can a female nine-banded armadillo in her 12–15 year lifespan.

Great Tit

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The Great Tit (Parus major), which feeds mainly on insects during summer, has a clever ‘waste disposal’ scheme. This fairly large passerine bird, produces its waste in enclosed pouches that it later disposes from its nest! Believe it or not, on average, the Great tit can accumulate and remove 500 pouches of waste from its nest in a week's time.


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What would a koala (Phascolarctos cinereus) gain by consuming about one kilogram of eucalyptus leaves a day? This bear-like marsupial even stock these leaves in pouches in its cheeks, Why? Eucalyptus leaves, which are 50 percent water, provide the needed liquids its body requires.


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The lion (Panthera leo) enjoys a very weird sex or mating lifestyle. When the ‘King of the Jungle’ wants to mate, no fierce lioness can stop him. Copulation (desire for sexual intercourse) arises every 15 minutes for one week straight. A good thing, a lion’s sexual desire occurs only once every 2 years!


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Many people think a chameleon changes color as a clever way to camouflage or to blend in with its surroundings. Partly true, however, this amazing ‘quick-change artist’ makes this clever act primarily to showcase some emotional state or conditions. For example: a male chameleon shows a multi-colored pattern during social displays, shows dark color patterns when angered, or lighter colors reflect light during the heat of the day. In other words, color change in chameleons occur as a social signal for communication, adapting to temperature and light, expressing mood, health condition, or simply to make them more comfortable.


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Question for the day — What is the most dangerous animal in Africa? Lion-nope, crocodiles, not either, snakes-perhaps. However, records have shown that Hippopotamus (Hippopotamus amphibius) kill more human annually than the above-mentioned animals.

Diving Bell Spider

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The Diving Bell Spider (Argyroneta aquatica), or water spider, is the only species of spider that live virtually its entire life under water. How does it survive? This arachnid makes such amazing feat by creating spinning a diving bell (an an open-bottomed dome-shaped silk cocoon) that acts as its living quarter, as well as ‘gills’ that take in oxygen from the water. A new study reveals, that diving bell spider can stay underwater for hours at a time.


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Here’s an amazing fact about hedgehog – this spiny, the little mammal that hibernate in cold climates has amazing heart rate figures to show. While resting, a hedgehog’s200 to 300 times a minute; around 150 beats a minute when sleeping and just below 14 beats per minute during hibernation.


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Serving both as a chisel and a crowbar, the woodpecker uses its strong, pointed beak to tear off bark in search of insects. Do you know that a woodpecker can peck its beak up to 20 times per second!

Grizzly Bear

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Believe it or not, the grizzly bear (Ursus arctos horribilis), which averages between 180–360 kilograms can run as fast as an average horse! This brown bear can attain a running speed of up to 40 miles per hour.

Giant Anteater

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The Giant Anteater (Myrmecophaga pterodactyl), is the largest species of anteater. An adult can measure up to 2.1 m in length with a long, tube-like head ending in a small nose about an inch wide. But do you know that these termite-eating mammals have no teeth.


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‘To be or not to be’ — perhaps this is the hardest question clams are asking themselves. Why ? Because all clams are born males. However, they have the option to become a female once, and the change is irreversible


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The giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis), has many amazing facts to brag about. It is the world’s tallest mammal reaching 5–6 m meters in height. Also, it has the longest tail of any land mammal – up to 8 feet long, A Giraffe can open and close its nostrils at will. However, this gentle giant has no tear ducts and lacks a vocal cord!