NatureGround 25 Worlds Weirdest Animals (pics)

Edited: 8/8/07 12:00 AM
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25 Worlds Weirdest Animals

Emperor Tamarin

The Emperor Tamarin is a primate supposedly named for its similarity with the German emperor Wilhelm II. The name started as a joke, but stuck and became the official scientific name.

This tamarin is found in the southwest Amazon Basin, east Peru, north Bolivia and in the west Brazilian states of Acre and Amazonas. The primate inhabits tropical rain forests, living deep in the forest and in open tree-covered areas.

They're predominantly grey with yellowish speckles on their chest. The hands and feet are black and the tail is brown. The most notable feature is its long white mustache, extending to the sides beyond its shoulders. They reach to a length of 9.5 to 10.5 inches (24 to 26 centimeters), with a 14 inch (35 centimeter) long tail, and weigh approximately 11 to 14 ounces (300 to 400 grams).

White-faced Saki Monkey

The White-faced Saki is a type of New World monkey found in Brazil, French Guiana, Guyana, Suriname, and Venezuela. They feed mostly on fruits, but also nuts, seeds, and insects.


Tapirs are large browsing mammals, roughly pig-like in shape, with short, prehensile snouts -- able to take hold of things, especially by wrapping around them. They inhabit jungle and forest regions of South America, Central America, and Southeast Asia and considered endangered or vulnerable.

Size varies between species, but most tapirs are about 7 feet (2 meters) long, stand about 3 feet (1 meter) high at the shoulder, and weigh between 330 to 700 pounds (150 and 300 kilograms). They range in color from reddish-brown to grey to nearly black, with the exceptions of the Malayan Tapir -- which has a white saddle-shaped marking on its back -- and the Mountain Tapir -- which has longer, wooly fur.

Sun Bear

The Sun Bear is primarily found in the tropical rainforests of Southeast Asia. They stand approximately 4 feet (1.2 meters) in length, and the smallest of the bear family. It's often called the dog bear because of its small stature. The typical Sun Bear weighs less than 145 pounds (65 kilograms).

Primarily nocturnal creatures, the Sun Bear rests during the day on lower limbs not far above the ground, spending much of its time in trees. Hunting of nuisance bears is a major cause for recent decline in population, as well as poaching for its fur and use in Chinese medicine.


Hagfish are marine vertebrates, with some debate as to whether they're strictly fish. Their unusual feeding habits and slime-producing capabilities have led to the hagfish being dubbed as the most 'disgusting' of all sea creatures.

Hagfish are long worm-shaped creatures that exude copious amounts of a sticky slime or mucus. 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. They clean themselves off by tying in an overhand knot which works its way from the head to the tail of the animal, scraping off the slime as it wriggles.

Hagfish have elongated, 'eel-like' bodies, and paddle-like tails. Colors vary by species, ranging from pink to blue-grey, and may have black or white mottling. The eyes may be non-functional or absent. With no true fins or jaws, they have six barbels around their mouths and a single nostril. They have a pair of horizontally moving structures with tooth-like projections for pulling off food. They average 18 inches (45 centimeters) in length.

Hagfish enter both living and dead fish, feeding on the insides. They often enter through the openings of the mouth, gills or anus. They tend to be quite common in their range, sometimes becoming a nuisance to fishermen by devouring the catch before it can be pulled to the surface.

Star-nosed Mole

The Star-nosed Mole is a small North American mole found in eastern Canada and the north-eastern United States

It lives in wet lowland areas and eats small invertebrates, aquatic insects, worms and mollusks. As avid swimmers, they forage along the bottoms of streams and ponds. They dig shallow surface tunnels for foraging, and oftentimes the tunnels exit underwater. They remain active in winter, having been observed tunneling through the snow and swimming in ice-covered streams.

The Star-nosed Mole is covered in thick blackish brown water-repellent fur with large scaled feet. The long thick tail appears to function as a fat storage reserve for the spring breeding season. Adults are 6 to 8 inches (15 to 20 centimeters) in length, weighing about 2 ounces (55 grams). Their most distinctive feature is a circle of 22 mobile, pink, fleshy tentacles at the end of its snout, used to identify food by touch.

Proboscis Monkey

The Proboscis Monkey -- also known as Long-nosed Monkey -- is a reddish-brown arboreal Old World monkey.

Its most distinctive trait is the male's large protruding nose. The purpose of its large shnoz is unclear, but it's been suggested that it's a result of sexual selection. The female Proboscis Monkey prefers big-nosed males.

Males are much larger than females, reaching 28 inches (72 centimeters) in length, with tails up to 29 inches, and weighing up to 53 pounds (24 kilograms). Females are up to 24 inches (60 centimeters) long, weighing up to 26 pounds (12 kilograms).

The Proboscis Monkey has a large belly as a result of its diet. Its digestive system releases a lot of gas, resulting in the monkey's 'bloated' bellies.

Edited: 8/8/07 12:00 AM
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Pink Fairy Armadillo

The Pink Fairy Armadillo is the smallest of its species. It's about 3.5 to 4.5 inches (90 to115 Milimeters) long excluding the tail, and pale rose or pink in color. It's found in central Argentina inhabiting dry grasslands and sandy plains with thorn bushes and cacti. It has the ability to bury itself completely in a matter of seconds if alarmed.

The Pink Fairy Armadillo burrows small holes near ant colonies in dry dirt where it feeds upon them.


The Axolotl is the most widely known of the Mexican mole salamanders. The species originates from the lake underlying Mexico City. Axolotls are used extensively in scientific research for their ability to regenerate body parts. They're commonly kept as pets in the United States, Great Britain, Australia, and Japan.

A sexually-mature adult axolotl, at age 18 to 24 months, ranges in length from 6 to18 inches (15 to 45 centimeters) although 9 inches is most common. <iframe name="google_ads_frame" src="" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" vspace="0" hspace="0" allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="280" scrolling="no" width="336"></iframe>


The Aye-aye is native to Madagascar, that combines rodent-like teeth with a long, thin middle finger. Being the world's largest nocturnal primate, It's characterized by its unique method of finding food, tapping on trees to find grubs, then gnawing holes in the wood and inserting its elongated middle finger to pull the grubs out.

The Aye-aye is currently an endangered species. They're the world's largest nocturnal primate, and dwell predominantly in forest canopies, weighing about 5.5 pounds (2.5 kilograms).


The Alpaca is a domesticated species of South American camelid derived from the wild alpacas. It resembles a sheep in appearance but larger, with a long erect neck. The Alpaca has varied colors, whereas sheep are generally bred to be white and black.

Alpacas graze in herds on the level heights of the Andes of Ecuador, southern Peru, northern Bolivia, and northern Chile

Smaller than llamas, they're valued only for their fiber. Alpacas have fleece fibers -- not woolen -- used for making knitted and woven items much as sheep's wool is. Alpacas and llamas differ in that llamas have banana shaped ears and long tails and alpacas have straight ears and stubby tails.

Edited: 8/8/07 12:00 AM
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Tarsiers are primates with enormous eyes and long feet. Their feet have extremely elongated tarsus bones, which is how they were penned their name. Primarily insectivorous, they catch insects by jumping at them. They're also known to prey on birds and snakes. As they jump from tree to tree, tarsiers can catch even birds in motion.

All tarsier species are nocturnal in their habits, but like many nocturnal organisms some individuals may show some activity during the daytime.

Fossils of tarsiers are found in Asia, Europe, North America, with disputed fossils from Africa, but existing tarsiers are restricted to several Southeast Asian islands including the Philippines, Sulawesi, Borneo, and Sumatra.

Tarsiers have never formed successful breeding colonies in captivity, and when caged tarsiers have been known to injure and even kill themselves due to stress.

Dumbo Octopus

This octopus is sometimes nicknamed 'Dumbo octopus' due to the ear-like fins protruding from the top of its 'head' (actually body), resembling the ears of Walt Disney's flying elephant Dumbo. They live at extreme depths, and are some of the rarest of the Octopoda species.

Frill-necked Lizard

The Frill-necked Lizard -- also known as the Frilled Lizard or Frilled Dragon -- has been nicknamed as such due to the large ruff of skin which usually lies folded back against its head and neck. The neck frill is supported by long spines of cartilage. When the lizard is frightened, it gapes its mouth showing a bright pink or yellow lining, and the frill flares out, displaying bright orange and red scales. The frill may also aid in maintaining body temperature.

They can grow up to 3 feet (1 meter) in total length and often walk 2-legged when on the ground. When frightened they begin to run on all-fours and accelerate onto the hind-legs.

The lizard is found in southern New Guinea, the Kimberley region of Western Australia and across northern Australia. It primarily inhabits savanna woodlands, but may also be found in tropical to warm temperate forests.

Komondor Dog

The Komondor is a livestock guardian dog breed originally from Hungary.

Females are 27 inches (69 centimeters) at the shoulders. Male Komondorok are a minimum of 28 inches at the shoulders, but many are over 30 inches tall. People unfamiliar with the breed are often surprised by how quick and agile they are.

Its long, thick, strikingly corded white coat resembles dreadlocks or a mop. The puppy coat is soft, fluffy and wavy, curling as the puppy matures. A fully mature coat is formed naturally from the soft undercoat and the coarser outer coat combining to form tassels, or cords. Maintenance is required in separating the cords so the dog doesn't become a large matted muddle. The length of the cords increases with time as the coat grows.

Angora Rabbit

The Angora rabbit is a variety of domestic rabbit bred for its long, soft hair. They're believed to have originated in Turkey, along with the Angora cat and Angora goat. The rabbits made for popular pets with French royalty in the mid 1700s, spreading to other parts of Europe by the end of the century.

Angoras are bred mainly for their soft silky wool. Most are calm and docile but should be handled carefully. Grooming its fur is necessary to prevent the fur from matting and felting on the animal. Prone to hairballs, they require daily grooming.

Here are several videos of the Angora Rabbit for your amusement.


The Narwhal is an Arctic aquatic mammal, one of two species of white whale -- the other being the beluga whale.

The most conspicuous characteristic of male narwhal is their single extraordinarily long tusk, an incisor that projects from the left side of the upper jaw and forms a left-handed helix. The tusk can extend up to 10 feet (3 meters) long. About one in 500 males has two tusks, which occurs when the right tooth, normally small, also grows out. Although rare, a female narwhal may also produce a tusk.

Scientists believe the tusk is primarily used for showmanship and for dominance -- males with larger tusks are more likely to successfully attract a mate. This hypothesis was suggested by the activity of 'tusking', in which two males rub their tusks together.

Male narwhals weigh up to 3500 pounds (1600 kilograms), the female around 2200 pounds (1000 kilograms). Most of the body is pale with brown speckles in color, though the neck, head and edges of the flippers and fluke are nearly black. Older animals are usually more brightly colored than younger animals.

Sucker-footed Bat

The Madagascar Sucker-footed Bat, Old World Sucker-footed Bat, or Sucker-footed Bat is a species of bat in the Myzopodidae family, and prevalent to Madagascar. The Sucker-footed Bat is currently threatened by habitat loss.

Pygmy Marmoset

The Pygmy Marmoset is a monkey native to the rainforest canopies of western Brazil, southeastern Colombia, eastern Ecuador, and eastern Peru. It's one of the smallest primates, with its body length ranging from 5.5 to 6.5 inches (14 to16 centimeters) excluding its 6 to 8 inch tail. Males weigh around 5 ounces (140 grams), and females 4.2 ounces (120 grams).

The Pygmy Marmoset bears a tawny coat and a ringed tail that can be as long as its body. Their claws are specially adapted for climbing trees. Although omnivorous, much of their diet comes from tapping trees for sap. Up to two-thirds of their time is spent gouging tree bark to reach the gummy sap. The Pygmy Marmoset has specialized incisors for gouging holes in bark.

Edited: 8/8/07 12:00 AM
Posts: 765
Red Panda

The Red Panda is mostly a herbivorous mammal, slightly larger than a domestic cat at 22 inches (55 centimeters) long. The Red Panda has semi-retractile claws and like the Giant Panda, it has a 'false thumb' which is actually an extension of the wrist bone. The Red Panda is native to the Himalayas in Nepal and southern China.

The Red Panda and Giant Panda are only very distantly related by remote common ancestry from the Early Tertiary Period. Fossils of the Red Panda have been unearthed from China in the east to Britain in the west. A handful of fossils considered to be a new genus and species of the Red Panda have recently been discovered in North America.

The Red Panda is classified as an endangered species, with an estimated population of less than 2,500 mature individuals. This number continues to decline due to severely fragmented populations.


The Blobfish inhabits the deep waters off the coasts of Australia and Tasmania. Due to the inaccessibility of its habitat, it's rarely seen by humans.

Blobfish are found at depths where the pressure is several dozens of times higher than at sea level. To remain buoyant, the flesh of the Blobfish is primarily a gelatinous mass with a density slightly less than water; which allows the fish to float above the sea floor without expending energy on swimming. The relative lack of muscle is not a disadvantage as it primarily swallows edible matter that floats by in front it.


The Platypus (Ornithorhynchus anatinus) is a semi-aquatic mammal endemic to eastern Australia, including Tasmania. Together with the four species of echidna, it is one of the five extant species of monotremes, the only mammals that lay eggs instead of giving birth to live young. It is the sole living representative of its family (Ornithorhynchidae) and genus (Ornithorhynchus), though a number of related species have been found in the fossil record.

The bizarre appearance of this egg-laying, duck-billed mammal baffled naturalists when it was first discovered, with some considering it an elaborate fraud. It is one of the few venomous mammals; the male Platypus has a spur on the hind foot which delivers a poison capable of causing severe pain to humans. The unique features of the Platypus make it an important subject in the study of evolutionary biology and a recognizable and iconic symbol of Australia; it has appeared as a mascot at national events and is featured on the reverse of the Australian 20 cent coin.

Until the early 20th century it was hunted for its fur, but it is now protected throughout its range. Although captive breeding programs have had only limited success and the Platypus is vulnerable to the effects of pollution, it is not under any immediate threat.

via Wiki

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The Shoebill is a very large bird related to the storks, deriving its name from its massive shoe-shaped bill.

A very large bird, it averages 4 feet (1.2 meters) tall, 12 pounds (5.5 kilograms) and 8 feet (2.5 meters) across the wings. The adult is mainly grey, while the juveniles are browner. It's found in tropical east Africa in large swamps from Sudan to Zambia. The bird was known to both ancient Egyptians and Arabs.

Shoebills feed in muddy waters, preying on lungfish and similar fish. They nest on the ground, laying 2 eggs.

The population is estimated between 5,000 and 8,000, the majority of which are in Sudan. Bird Life International has classified it as Vulnerable, with its main threats being habitat destruction, disturbance and hunting.


Sloths are medium-sized mammals that live in Central and South America, mainly in Cecropia trees.

Sloths are omnivores, mainly feasting on insects, small lizards and carrion, but their diet consists mostly of buds, tender shoots, and leaves.

As much as two-thirds of a well-fed sloth's body-weight consists of the contents of its stomach, and the digestive process can take as long as a month or more to complete. They have very low metabolic rates (less than half of that expected for a creature of their size), and maintain low body temperatures when active (30 to 34 degrees Celsius or 86 to 93 degrees Fahrenheit), and even lower temperatures when resting.

Yeti Crab

The Yeti Crab is a crustacean discovered in 2005 in the South Pacific Ocean. Approximately 6 inches (15 centimeters) long, is noted for the silky blond setae (resembling fur) covering its thoracic legs, including the claws.

It was discovered March 7 2006, 900 miles (1,500 kilometers) south of Easter Island in the South Pacific. The creature has strongly reduced eyes that lack pigment, and thought to be blind.

The 'hairy' pincers contain filamentous bacteria, which the creature uses to detoxify poisonous minerals from the water emitted by the hydrothermal vents where it lives. Although it's thought to be a general carnivore, its diet also consists of green algae and small shrimp.

Although often referred to as the 'furry lobster', it's not a true lobster, but more closely related to hermit crabs.

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How can they talk about the Proboscis Monkey without mentioning Jimmy Durante?
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Great find, Briscoe....although I think I'm about to lose my lunch after looking at the Blobfish.............W-T-F?!?!?!!?
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Star-Bellied Sneech

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Awesome thread! I love stuff like this
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very cool. i feel like i just skimmed national geographic during lunch.
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lol@ this pic

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willy is correct
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the hagfish sounds scary
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cool! Needs more invertebrates though.
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I caught a Star Nosed Mole before.. just a little one out on the lake in the winter.
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I saw a Star-nosed Mole about 15 years ago while I was in Maine & I swear I thought I had found a chupacabra! Very strange looking animal.
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the blob fish = the end result of the evolution of the average american. that's is an awesome pic of the sucidal sloth.
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Gulper eels are pretty fucked up
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Pygmy Marmoset = Captain Caveman
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Put some wings on the Tapir and it looks like Watto from Star Wars. The Axolotl looks like a Smiley Face :) Alpaca = Retarded albino lama Red Panda = Firefox (the browser logo)
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I love the Rasta dog!
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Nature's Pokemon
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excellent thread