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.
You might be surprised to learn that this beautiful sea critter (also known as a sea swallow or blue dragon) is actually a sea slug. The blue and silvery mollusk is known to feed off cnidarians like the venomous Portuguese Man o' War. What makes these gorgeous slugs even more fascinating is their practice of storing the cnidarians's stinging nematocysts within its own tissues — ensuring a painful sting to anyone who messes with it.
The saiga antelope is known for its large distinctive nose, which can flex and inflate to help it breath better in dusty summers and harsh winters of the Kazakhstan. In the summer, its coat is thin and tawny, but in the winter it grows a wooly pelt. The saiga antelope is a major player in one of the most spectacular animal migrations. It faces an uncertain future due to hunting and loss of habitat.
Make no mistake — those tree trunks seen above are not saplings. That's right, those crabs are huge! Growing up to a meter in length from leg to leg, these terrestrial hermit crabs are the largest land-living arthropods in the world. Although they are omnivores that have been known to consume turtle hatchlings, they generally prefer to eat fleshy fruits and, you guessed it, coconuts!
Mommy told me never to go in the basement, but I wanted to see what was making that noise. It kind of sounded like a puppy, and I wanted to see the puppy, so I opened the basement door and tiptoed down a bit. I didn’t see a puppy, and then Mommy yanked me out of the basement and yelled at me. Mommy had never yelled at me before, and it made me sad and I cried. Then Mommy told me never to go into the basement again, and she gave me a cookie. That made me feel better, so I didn’t ask her why the boy in the basement was making noises like a puppy, or why he had no hands or feet.
“I was very surprised to find these giant hare-like animals just wandering freely around the children’s play area in Nottingham! They are called Mara or Patagonian Hares, and they are quite big with very spindly legs. They seemed very calm and just nibbled on grass. I guess they can’t be too dangerous! I saw a family of these hares watching steadily at the visitors.” – Ranjit Pol
Approximately 99 percent of "supernatural" videos can be revealed as hoaxes simply by asking "Why was anyone filming this?" As much as Cloverfield and The Blair Witch Project have attempted to convince us otherwise, people usually don't have cameras glued to their faces unless they know someone is about to be shot out of a cannon or something. So that's our question as soon as this video opens:
Hosted by the Illinois Paranormal Research Association, Believe operates on a weekly basis, with the crew traveling the country, documenting every demonic disembodied voice and shadowy figure along the way. Led by David Scott, these paranormal investigators have made it their mission to separate the haunted from the not-so-haunted, using innovative investigation techniques to capture both visual and audio evidence while visiting everything from haunted hotels to mental health hospitals.
Despite its reddish hue and cape-like webbing that may call Count Dracula to mind, Vampyroteuthis infernalis is harmless. This deep-dwelling species — typically living in 2,000 to 4,000 feet of water — can flip its webbing inside out as a form of protection, revealing rows of soft tooth-like spines called cirri. This scaredy-cat is a far cry from all other cephalopods, which hunt live animals.
These animals, known as sea pigs, are in fact a type of sea cucumber. Sea pigs are found in the deepest abyssal depths of the world’s oceans, as far as 3.7 miles under the ocean surface. They are known to eat bits of decaying plant and animal material found in deep sea mud, but are awfully fond of food that has recently fallen from the ocean’s surface, like a whale corpse!
“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