There are about 8.7 million species, that we know of anyway, on planet Earth. With so many animals, it’s likely you haven’t kept track of each and every one. We all know about lions, tigers, and bears (oh my!), but when you really dig deeper, you might be surprised by the strange animals roaming around out there in the wild. From weird looking amphibians to pokey mammals, the sheer amount of diversity in the animal kingdom is pretty amazing! Curious to see what oddball beasts we found? Here are 25 Bizarre Animals You Didn’t Know Exist.


“The leaf-tailed geckos are native to Madagascar and are renowned for their camouflage. This individual is just a juvenile. Many of the leaf-tailed gecko species press their bodies against wooden limbs and trunks during the daytime, and their flattened bodies, fringes, and tails eliminate any shadow, making them invisible to predators. At night, they become active and hunt primarily invertebrate prey.” – Mike Martin

After just moving into a new house in England, Michelle Widwinter went outside to take a quick picture of home sweet home. It wasn't until Michelle looked back at the pic later that she noticed a face staring through the downstairs window. When she posted the picture online, a local historian, Andrew Jones, determined that the man in the photo could have been the apparition of "Old Man Kent," who was a suspect in a famous murder case in 1860. As a non-ghost believer, Michelle initially thought it was nothing more than a reflection of the flower bush in her front yard. But after seeing the picture, hearing weird noises coming from the walls, and seeing her lights flicker, she couldn't help but wonder if it was, in fact, the face of the man.
The Angel of Catalonia video has accumulated millions of views since its upload in 2006 and has made several lists on the internet “proving” ghosts and the paranormal are real. In the video, two men hit record on their camera as they enter a forest outside the town of Campdevànol, Spain, then come across some large feathers in the woods. Finally they pan over to what looks like a man with open wounds on his back, who turns and looks at them, catching a reflection in his eyes. The video is a very well produced hoax by some Spanish horror film fans who used to explain their process at a now-defunct making of site (but the Wayback Machine never forgets).

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!
Here’s a fun fact about the maned wolf: it is not a type of wolf, and it may look like a fox, but it’s not really a fox. It is, however, the largest of all canids or the mammals of the dog family. It is also the sole species under the genus Chrysocyon. The maned wolf is best known for its relatively long limbs and long russet-colored coat. The maned wolf wanders in the wild and is usually found in Peru, Argentina, and Brazil among others.
Evolution, I just have a few questions. And they all have to do with why this fish looks oddly like my Grandpa Tom. Also, who was so lazy that they decided on ‘blobfish’? Honestly, I could write an entire book of questions, but for now, I’ll just admire the laziness of the blobfish, who doesn’t work for food and rather just inhales whatever floats by that looks generally edible (yes––that’s true).
Not only does this Japanese facial-tissue commercial make no sense as an ad -- what does that tomato/unicorn baby have against wiping itself? -- it's also, supposedly, cursed. Like earlier "viral" videos that would get passed around on VHS, this curse comes with an isolating twist: Watch the video by yourself at midnight (in your respective time zone, of course), and the video changes to a distorted, satanic-looking mess with a pair of black eyes that stare back at you.
“The leaf-tailed geckos are native to Madagascar and are renowned for their camouflage. This individual is just a juvenile. Many of the leaf-tailed gecko species press their bodies against wooden limbs and trunks during the daytime, and their flattened bodies, fringes, and tails eliminate any shadow, making them invisible to predators. At night, they become active and hunt primarily invertebrate prey.” – Mike Martin
The Mutillidae are a family of more than 3,000 species of wasps (despite the names) whose wingless females resemble large, hairy ants. Found in Chile, they are known for their extremely painful stings, hence the common name cow killer or cow ant. Black and white specimens are sometimes known as panda ants due to their hair coloration resembling that of the Chinese giant panda. (Image credits: Chris Lukhaup)

​Galeopterus variegatus, also named Sunda Colugo or the Sunda Flying Lemur, is a nocturnal and arboreal (lives in trees) mammal endemic to Indochina and Sundaland. These animals possess large membranes of skin called patagiums that extend along the limbs, allowing them to glide along distances of up to around 100 meters; given that these animals are only around 40 centimeters in length that's pretty impressive skills! The mottled coloring of these animals also makes them look a bit like the lichen of a tree and therefore helps to camouflage them. 
The Saiga antelope can be found around Russia, Kazakhstan, and Uzbekistan and is easily recognized thanks to its large and flexible nose. In reality, its gigantic schnoz helps to filter out dust and regulate its blood temperature. In May 2015, more than 120,000 Saiga antelope were found dead. Scientists believe they were victims of a suspected epizootic illness that infected the herd.
This one is not so exciting to look at, but it totally wins the bizarre animal contest. It is colloquially known as a “sea squirt.” This is a sea critter that eats its own brain. A marine invertebrate, it spends part of its life in a larval stage where it can swim around in the water much like a fish or any other mobile animal. This is a relatively brief period in the sea squirt’s life. They cannot feed in this stage, so they swim off, find a nice little bit of seabed to settle in on, and then plant themselves.
This one is not so exciting to look at, but it totally wins the bizarre animal contest. It is colloquially known as a “sea squirt.” This is a sea critter that eats its own brain. A marine invertebrate, it spends part of its life in a larval stage where it can swim around in the water much like a fish or any other mobile animal. This is a relatively brief period in the sea squirt’s life. They cannot feed in this stage, so they swim off, find a nice little bit of seabed to settle in on, and then plant themselves.
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There was a lady all skin and bone;  Sure such a lady was never known: It happened upon a certain day, This lady went to the church to pray. When she came to the church stile, There she did rest a little while; When she came to the church yard, There the bells so loud she heard. When she came to the church door, She stopped to rest a little more; When she came (to) the church within, The parson prayed 'gainst pride and sin. On looking up, on looking down, She saw a dead man on the ground; And from his nose unto his chin, The worms crawled out, the worms crawled in. Then she unto the parson said, Shall I be so when I am dead? O yes.! O yes, the parson said, You will be so when you are dead. Here the lady screams.
And the light from the "angel" has a strange weight to it -- you can see it pulse outward at the bottom as it suddenly gains mass after striking the ground. Anyway, maybe a Pixar animator got bored and threw this together just to mess with people. After contacting all of his or her friends in Jakarta, Indonesia, to stage it. Including, of course, his or her friends with access to the security footage of that particular public square.
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