Discovered in 800 feet of water off the Philippines, the terrible claw lobster is a translucent pinkish-white crustacean measuring an inch in length. Just as dinosaur means terrible lizard, the scientific name of this lobster, Dinochelus, means terrible claw. The inside surface of this lobster’s claws are lined with long, spinelike teeth, the function of which is likely related to feeding or anti-predation.
The Yeti crab is a recently discovered animal which lives in the South Pacific Ocean. The Yeti crab looks like it’s always wearing the bright yellow crab-mittens its grandmother gave it for Christmas one year. It’s roughly 15 cm long and its pincers contain bacteria which it can use to clean the water around its body. It usually eats green algae and small shrimp.
Just last week, divers in the Solomon Islands discovered a glowing sea turtle under the waves. While other animals are known to be bioluminescent, this is the first documented case of a glowing reptile in the wild. According to diver David Gruber, an associate professor of biology at Baruch College, the hawksbill sea turtle’s shell glowed both red and green, but it’s likely that the red came from biofluorescent algae.
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.
This grotesque looking creature is the Aye- Aye, native to the island of Madagascar. These creatures are nocturnal i.e. they only come out at night. Aye-ayes spend their lives in rain forest trees and avoid coming down to earth. They have long witch-like fingers that help them grab small insects and grubs from tree trunks. These animals may not look like primates at first, but they are related to chimpanzees, apes, and even humans. Many locals regard the aye -aye as an omen of ill luck. For this reason they have often been killed on sight. Such hunting has made the aye-aye critically endangered, but thankfully they are protected by law.
Is it art? Is it someone who is just incredibly disturbed? Is it some sort of narrative that we’re missing? The YouTube account for Robert Helpmann includes several videos of “Daisy” who appears to be a mannequin taped up in a garbage bag that is treated like a human (initial shock was generated by people mistaking Daisy for a corpse). The most popular and disturbing of these videos, which started appearing in 2015, is “Daisy Unwinds” where Daisy is “fed” and thanks to the glory of low quality video, it’s hard to tell if the mannequin is actually eating or not.
This bizarre looking animal (Atretochoana eiselti), which shockingly is neither a penis nor a snake, was only known from two preserved specimens until it was rediscovered in 2011 while part of the Madeira River in South America was being drained. It’s a caecilian amphibian that can achieve a total length of around 80 centimeters, making it the biggest known caecilian. Little is known about these hilarious looking animals, but caecilians are limbless and generally navigate via their sense of smell.
“Yes I am old but this is not a picture of a dinosaur. Wandering around in the Viera Wetlands are these Florida Soft Shell Turtles. Clearly with a face that only a mother could love, these throw back to Old World Soft Shell Turtles could easily be thought to have come from eons ago! They lumber around the wetlands showing up on the banks from time to time.” – Thomas Rabideau
Surely at this point our ghost hunters are propelling themselves the hell out of that school on pants-shredding jets of crimson-tinged fear diarrhea. Except they aren't. In fact, they have no reaction at all, and they continue scouring in the haunted building for another two boring minutes until the clip ends. (At least the "moaning" isn't coming from the ghost -- it's the beginning of a call to prayer in a neighboring mosque. You hear the service continue throughout the rest of the video.)
What looks like a zombie shark is actually the Atlantic Wolffish. It is a deep sea fish. hence its appearance. It has very large teeth that stick out of its mouth, even when closed, giving it a ferocious appearance. Despite this look, Atlantic Wolffish are not aggressive towards people and are not known to bite people unless they are provoked. Atlantic Wolffish are voracious predators, and the large head, powerful jaws, and large canine teeth are all used to hunt and eat hard-bodied or spiny invertebrates. Their blood contains several natural compounds that prevent it from freezing.
It’s nearly Halloween, and it would be silly not to discuss some of the world’s most famous ghost sightings and actual video encounters. As I’m writing this, I’ve already been out and done my fair share of research. Which is great for you because what I have to show you will quite frankly have you looking over your shoulder for the next few weeks and sleeping with one eye open.
This strange blue creature may look like a monster from a Japanese RPG, but it actually is a real animal—the Glaucus atlanticus, sea slug, to be exact. Known as the blue dragon, this creature is a is a species of blue sea slug. You could find it in warm waters of the oceans, as it floats on the surface because of a gas-filled sac in its stomach. The blue dragon is an aggressive predator that feeds on organisms much larger than itself, including the venomous Portuguese man o’ war. Not only that, it actually absorbs the man o’ wars venom and stores it in the tips of the finger-like appendages on either side of its body to use when preying on other fish! So small but so vicious.
Blobfish, pangolin, and flower mantis are just a few of the names of the bizarre bugs and animals that readers will learn about in this fascinating nonfiction title. Through vibrant images and photos, informational text, a glossary of terms, and an index, readers will learn some of the strange ways that arthropods, invertebrates, and mammals have adapted over time to camouflage themselves and develop interesting ways to keep predators away.
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“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
“This is a maned wolf from the Piaui State of northeastern Brazil. It is the tallest wild canid in the world standing over 4 feet at the shoulder. Due to its red fur and fox-like face and ears, it is often called a fox on stilts. This particular wolf came sniffing around our camp the previous two nights but I was hoping to photograph it in existing light without flash. Maned wolves are mostly nocturnal but will forage in the morning and late afternoon and finally on the third night it came by early enough that I was able to get a bunch of shots before dusk.” – Sean Crane