1New Zealand Animals
In 2016, New Zealand announced its plan to eliminate rats, possums, and stoats in the whole country by 2050 to protect the country’s endangered flightless birds including kakapos.
2. Martens cause an estimated $65 million in damage to cars in Germany each year by chewing on rubber and plastic components.
3. The Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Illinois used to clean its particle accelerators with a ferret named Felicia, who would run through the tubes with cleaning supplies attached to her and was rewarded with hamburger meat.
4. Baking soda and dish soap (hydrogen peroxide) can be used to remove the smell of skunk spray. The oxygen molecules from the hydrogen peroxide bond with the thiols compound present in the skunk spray, completely neutralizing the odor.
5. There is an introduced bison population on Antelope Island in the Great Salt Lake that is different enough genetically from most farmed bison that it is used as one of the main genetic sources for reestablishing bison populations in the wild in North America.
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Deers in India (who are red-green colorblind) take advantage of the better-sighted langur monkeys by staying near them and learning the monkeys’ alarm signals for when they spot predators which are dangerous to the deer.
7. Other animals quickly eat shed deer/elk antlers because they are high in calcium, phosphorus, and protein. This is why they are hard to find even in places with abundant deer.
8. Monkeys in Japan learned to wash sweet potatoes in freshwater to clean them. They later switched to washing sweet potatoes in saltwater. It is theorized that this is because they like the salty taste more than plain potatoes.
9. During World War II, the British Army had a dedicated monthly budget to feed the monkeys of Gibraltar. Any monkey that became seriously ill or injured was treated in Royal Navy hospitals. They were entitled to the same treatment that a human serviceman would receive.
10. There is only one mammal species that uses stridulation as a means of communication with other members of its group. The lowland streaked tenrec, native to Madagascar, uses its spines to create high-pitched sounds by rubbing them against each other just as crickets use their scrapers to chirp.
Fossil evidence suggests there once existed a species of dwarf elephants in Sicily. The male grew the biggest at around a meter tall, while the baby was the size of a pigeon.
12. The Oxpecker not only eats ticks off of African wildlife (like elephants), it also drinks their blood and makes wounds even larger. Scientists now think the birds are actually parasites and not an example of mutualism, where both parties benefit.
13. Anteaters do not produce their own stomach acid. Instead, the ants consumed are digested in the very own acid the ants carry in their bodies: Formic acid.
14. Lemurs chew on, then rub, cyanide-secreting millipedes onto their fur to get high and to protect against mosquitos.
15. Porcupines can often be seen hauling large bones back to their dens. They eat them as they require the nutrients in them for growing their quills.
Pangolins are believed to be the world’s most trafficked mammal, accounting for as much as 20% of all illegal wildlife trade. Their scales can cost more than $3,000/kg on the black market.
17. Icelandic horses are not allowed to leave the country. If they do, they are banned from returning. This is because Iceland is an island so they have limited diseases, and this is another measure to prevent it.
18. The donkey is the domesticated descendants of the African Wild Ass. It is a critically endangered West African horse and it is estimated that there are only 570 Wild Asses left in the wild.
19. Flies find it hard to land on striped surfaces and zebras suffer far less from flies, which carry deadly diseases. Zebra stripes are more pronounced in environments that favor horseflies.
20. There is a project underway to bring back an animal from extinction and reintroduce it into its former habitat. The last remaining quagga, a subspecies of the plains zebra, died in 1883, and to date, the Quagga Project has succeeded in producing breeding lineages in 10 locations in South Africa.
Tapirs are so well endowed that can step on their penises while mating and trip as a result.
22. Rhinoceros have a 450 days gestation period. This long gestation period is also an obstacle to replenishing the population. All five species of rhinoceros are endangered or considered vulnerable, and three out of the five are considered critically endangered.
23. The Tulu camel is a breed that results from mating a male Bactrian camel with a female Dromedary. A Tulu camel is larger than either of the other two kinds of camels and has traditionally been used as a draft animal. This breed of camel is also used in the sport of Camel wrestling.
24. Dairy cows typically are born with horns and they are “de-horned” when young. Dairy farmers overtime use selective breeding to eliminate the recessive gene that causes horns in both male and female cattle.
25. “Opossum” can refer to any one of more than 100 different species of marsupial animals found in the Americas, while “possum” technically refers only to any of 67 marsupial species found in Australia, Indonesia, and Papua New Guinea.