In a photo provided by Stephen Tatum, an orange alligator is seen near a pond in Hanahan, S.C. Photos show the 4- to 5-foot-long alligator on the banks of a retention pond at the Tanner Plantation neighborhood. While no one knows exactly why this alligator is orange, Jay Butfiloski with the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources says the color may come from where the animal spent the winter, perhaps in a rusty steel culvert pipe. Experts say the alligator will shed its skin and probably return to a normal shade soon. 
Which one of these bizarre creatures and critters are you meeting for the first time? Discover animal kingdom oddballs that 500px photographers have captured for you, with jaw-dropping features that range from wide cartoon-ish eyes to extremely long limbs and snouts to exaggerated body parts that look downright scary. Plus, you’ll get the story behind each of these photographers’ wild encounters. Scroll down!
One of the most bizarre rodents, populating the deserts of East Africa, is the naked mole-rat. Famed as the longest living rodent in the world, this wrinkly mole rat has a life span of 30 years. With two yellow buck teeth protruding from a pale, hairless body, the mammal may not be an eye-pleaser, but it has an alluring longevity-related adaptation that has gripped researchers in recent years: It seems to be immune to cancer.
Most of us don’t grasp the variety of animals species that inhabit the Earth today, and some even get surprised as they find out there’s an animal they haven’t heard of before. But seriously now – out of 1,367,555[1] identified non-insect animal species that live on Earth today, how do you expect to know every single one of them? To put it into perspective, take into account that this number represents only 1% of all animal species that ever lived!
Voted as the world’s ugliest animal, the blob fish is actually a pretty harmless creature…Don’t let the permanent, miserable scowl on its face fool you. Blob fish are found as deep as 300 meters or more, meaning that they can be subject to severe decompression when they are pulled out from the waters to the surface. Blobfish don’t have swim bladders but do have very soft bones. That makes sense for an animal that lives in the crushing pressures of the deep sea, allowing the fish to compress without cracking their bones. But up at the surface the fish seems jellylike and basically collapses, distorting its features.
I always beg for them to give him one last chance. Of course, they did at first. Charlie has been back home several times, each shorter in duration than the last. Every time without fail, it all starts again. The neighbourhood cats with gouged out eyes showing up in his toy chest, my dad’s razors found dropped on the baby slide in the park across the street, mom’s vitamins replaced by bits of dishwasher tablets. My parents are hesitant now, using “last chances” sparingly. They say his disorder makes him charming, makes it easy for him to fake normalcy, and to trick the doctors who care for him into thinking he is ready for rehabilitation. That I will just have to put up with my boredom if it means staying safe from him.
“These small geckos are native to Madagascar. Other leaf-tailed geckos of the genus Uroplatus share a similar flattened tail, but the satanic leaf-tailed gecko has arguably the most leaf-like tail when compared to congeners. This is a fairly old photo, but proves that you can take nice photos with relatively cheap cameras. This was only a 3.2 megapixel Nikon Coolpix 3700…well before I had begun shooting with a DSLR.” – Mike Martin
The Panda Ant is a most unusual species of insect. Their name derives from the obvious resemblance to a panda in its markings. This remarkable insect is not even an ant. The Panda Ant is actually a variety of wingless wasp! Very little is known of this little seen insect. They have been seen to bring down animals as large as cows with only a few dozen stings.
Thorn bugs have interested people because of their unusual appearances. These deceptive insects, which are related to cicadas and leafhoppers, have developed enlarged and ornate pronotums, which resemble thorns on a branch. Not only does this aid in camouflaging them to look like a part of the plant they’re resting on, but it also discourages predators of both the bugs and the plant from taking a bite from fear of getting pierced.
When Anastassia was flipping through an old family album, she stumbled across a photo of herself playing with her pet birds when she was four years old. In the background was another girl holding what looks to be a stuffed animal. But the crazy part is, Anastassia says there was no other little girl there when the picture was taken—well, not living at least. Her parents also confirmed that they had never seen that child before. And as if this story wasn't creepy enough already, Anastassia allegedly was later told by a psychic, without being prompted, that the "spirit" of a young girl was following her.
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