Quite Interesting Animal Facts

Mammals – large

~ Elephant gestate for 22 months
~ An elephants trunk has about 100,000 muscles
~ The only type of bear that doesn’t eat meat is the Giant Panda

Rodents

~ Rodent teeth never stop growing so they need to gnaw constantly at tough woody stems, nuts, etc.
~ Female house mice are able to breed at 6 weeks old and can have up to 10 litters a year with 5 – 7 babies in each litter.

Sea mammals

~ A baby blue whale will drink more than 100ltrs (175pts) of their mothers milk a day for the first 6-8 months
~ A blue whales heart is the size of a small car
~ Dolphins click more than 300 times per second and use the echoes to find their way around
~ A seals heart will beat 10 times slower than normal while diving

Cats

~ The black panther is really a leopard
~ Tigers are the biggest and heaviest of all the big cats, growing up to 2.8m long and weighing up to 300kg
~ Lions need to eat about 5 – 7kg of meat a day
~ Cheetahs can run over 100km/hr (62mph) and after catching it’s prey needs ½ hour to catch it’s breath before it can eat it
~ Only jaguars, tigers, leopards and lions can roar and a male lion’s roar can be heard up to 5 miles away
~ Big cats pull in their claws when they walk whereas dogs can’t – distinguishing their tracks from one another

Dogs

~ Grey wolves are the largest of all wild dogs and are clever and strong hunters

Hoofed animals

~ The biggest horse is the shire horse – tallest recorded is 198cm (78in) from shoulder to its feet
~ Horses and zebras have 1 toe on each hoof, deer and cattle have 2 and rhinos and hippos have 3
~ A camels hump is made up of fat which is slowly used up if it doesn’t get enough to eat
~ As rhinos can’t see very well, they will often charge straight into trees and rocks as they see them as a threat

Birds

~ Hummingbirds are the only birds that can fly backwards
~ The flamingo eat algae and tiny pink shrimps that given their feathers their pink colourings
~ A swan has more than 25,000 feather on its body whereas small birds such as hummingbirds only have 900
~ A peacock’s fan can reach up to 7ft long however it’s tail feathers are much shorter and can be found behind the fan
~ Sparrowhawks turn upside down to catch other birds
~ A golden eagle can spot its prey from a mile away
~ Owls have one ear higher than the other to help them pinpoint their noisy prey
~ The eyes of birds of prey are fixed forwards as they are too large to swivel
~ The smallest bird of prey is the pygmy falcon that weighs in at 28g (1oz) and is 4cm (5½ inches) short
~ To kill it’s prey, the lanner falcon smacks into it with a force great enough to drop it dead instantly
~ The secretary bird, standing at 4ft tall, stamps its prey to death
~ A hummingbirds egg is just 1cm from end to end
~ Emu eggs are dull green when first laid but then turn black as they develop
~ The biggest egg recorded weighed in at 12kg (26lb) and belonged to the elephant bird of Madagascar that became extinct over 700 years ago
~ The kiwi bird is the size of a chicken and lays eggs that weigh nearly ¼ of its own weight
~ The biggest nest are made by bald eagles and can be up to 2.9m (9½ft) wide and 6m (20ft) deep
~ The song thrush waterproofs its nest by lining the inside with mud

Reptiles

~ Crocodiles in the Nile can grow up to 6m (20ft) in length
~ Difference between a crocodile and a alligator – crocodiles have a pair of teeth that stick out over the top of their jaws and alligators have wide shorter snouts
~ Crocodiles grow new teeth if they get ripped out while trying to drown their victims
~ Crocodiles ‘cry’ when they’ve been out of the water for too long – the tears help to clean and lubricate their eyes
~ Crocodiles have three eyelids – a top, bottom and clear one to protect the eye when underwater


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