June 28, 2011

Worlds Weirdest Animals - Part 2

Emperor Tamarin

The Emperor Tamarin (Saguinus imperator) is a tamarin allegedly named for its similarity with the German emperor Wilhelm II. The name was first intended as a joke, but has become the official scientific name.

This tamarin lives in the southwest Amazon Basin , in east Peru , north Bolivia and in the west Brazilian states of Acre and Amazonas. 
The fur of the Emperor Tamarin is predominantly grey colored, with yellowish speckles on its chest. The hands and feet are black and the tail is brown. Outstanding is its long, white mustache, which extends to both sides beyond the shoulders. The animal reaches a length of 24 to 26 cm, plus a 35 cm long tail. It weighs approximately 300 to 400 g. This primate inhabits tropical rain forests, living deep in the forest and also in open tree-covered areas. It is a diurnal animal, spending the majority of its days in the trees with quick, safe movements and broad jumps among the limbs.


 
White-faced Saki Monkey

The White-faced Saki (Pithecia pithecia), also known as the Guianan Saki and the Golden-faced Saki, is a species of saki monkey, a type of New World monkey, found in Brazil, French Guiana, Guyana, Suriname, and Venezuela.. This monkey mostly feed on fruits, but also nuts, seeds, and insects.


 
Tapir

Tapirs are large browsing mammals, roughly pig-like in shape, with short, prehensile snouts. They inhabit jungle and forest regions of South America, Central America, and Southeast Asia . All four species of tapir are classified as endangered or vulnerable. Their closest relatives are the other odd-toed ungulates, horses and rhinoceroses.


 
Hagfish

Hagfish are marine craniates of the class Myxini, also known as Hyperotreti. Despite their name, there is some debate about whether they are strictly fish (as there is for lampreys), since they belong to a much more primitive lineage than any other group that is commonly defined fish (Chondrichthyes and Osteichthyes) . Their unusual feeding habits and slime-producing capabilities have led members of the scientific and popular media to dub the hagfish as the most "disgusting" of all sea creatures.

Hagfish are long, vermiform and can exude copious quantities of a sticky slime or mucus (from which the typical species Myxine glutinosa was named). When captured and held by the tail, they escape by secreting the fibrous slime, which turns into a thick and sticky gel when combined with water, and then cleaning off by tying themselves in an overhand knot which works its way from the head to the tail of the animal, scraping off the slime as it goes. Some authorities conjecture that this singular behavior may assist them in extricating themselves from the jaws of predatory fish. However, the "sliming" also seems to act as a distraction to predators, and free-swimming hagfish are seen to "slime" when agitated and will later clear the mucus off by way of the same travelling-knot behavior.


 
Star-nosed Mole

The Star-nosed Mole (Condylura cristata) is a small North American mole found in eastern Canada and the north-eastern United States . It is the only member of the tribe Condylurini and the genus Condylura.

It lives in wet lowland areas and eats small invertebrates, aquatic insects, worms and molluscs. It is a good swimmer and can forage along the bottoms of streams and ponds. Like other moles, this animal digs shallow surface tunnels for foraging; often, these tunnels exit underwater. It is active day and night and remains active in winter, when it has been observed tunnelling through the snow and swimming in ice-covered streams. Little is known about the social behavior of the species, but it is suspected that it is colonial.

The Star-nosed Mole is covered in thick blackish brown water-repellent fur and has large scaled feet and a long thick tail, which appears to function as a fat storage reserve for the spring breeding season. Adults are 15 to 20 cm in length, weigh about 55 g, and have 44 teeth. The mole's most distinctive feature is a circle of 22 mobile, pink, fleshy tentacles at the end of the snout. These are used to identify food by touch, such as worms, insects and crustaceans.



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