Smokey the Bearsharktopus says “Rawrgh!”
And then it eats you. With gusto. And some fava beans and a nice chianti.
Ahh....you’ll have to excuse me. I’m hungry. I should be cooking diner right now, but I’m doing this instead. Because I’m that dedicated!*
Anyway, like I said, I’m hungry, so let’s just move along here.
Today I want to tell you about some strange creatures. Not made up ones like the Bearsharktopus or Piranhaconda, but real ones. Ones that you can actually go see for yourself. Not that I’d advise it. These things are pretty freaky.
This is a fish that is found in the waters of the western Atlantic ocean from New Brunswick to Chile. As you can see from the picture, it’s natural markings make the diamond shaped scales that cover the black stripes to just ‘pop’.
Also, it has a mouthful of human teeth.
Ok, they aren’t really human teeth. They’re just shaped like them. Because of it’s diet, teeth shaped like these are ideal. They eat barnacles and clams so big, chisel-like teeth help.
Next up we have.....
Dobby Aye Aye
While it may look like a house elf, the Aye Aye is actually a lemur. They grow to be about 3 feet with their tails another three feet. This one is a baby. Because SQUEE! Also because it shows the hand fairly well. Look at it’s right hand.
Yes. Hand is correct. Lemurs are primates. So are we. And like most primates they have an opposable thumb and four fingers. I don’t know about you, but where I come from we call that a hand.
Anyway, look at it’s right hand. It’s thumb is resting on the human thumb. Now, focus on the middle finger. You see how it’s really thin and kind of bulbous at the tip? That’s it’s hunting finger. Aye Ayes are percussive hunters. It uses the bulbous end of that finger to tap on the bark of a tree, listening for a hollow sound that signifies a grub. It then uses the outward slating teeth of it’s protruding mouth to drill a hole in the bark. It then uses that same, slender middle finger to reach in and grab the grub.
Nope. I swear I didn’t photoshop a picture of two foxes. Those are called Maned Wolves. They look like foxes, but aren’t. It’s called a wolf, but it isn’t. It has the legs of a deer, but it’s not related. So what the hell is it? A real life version of Man-Bear-Pig.
It lives in central South America and is the only member of it’s Genus. It does have share a lineage with the other Canids, but it’s not that closely related to any other living canids.
It’s thought that it’s preferred hunting ground of the tall grass is why it has such long legs, but that’s speculation. Maybe it hunts in the tall grass to hide it’s long legs. Maybe they feel awkward and embarrassed.
This......thing.....lives on the islands of Indonesia. The locals call it a Pigdeer. I get the pig part, but the deer part escapes me. Tusks on a wild pig or boar are common. In fact, if you see a boar without tusks it’s generally because it broke them off killing something. Boars are mean. Like, Kill-you-on-sight mean.
Now consider the fact that wild boars only have two tusks and this fella has four. Does that mean the Babirusa is twice as mean? No. It just means it needs to go see a good orthodontist.
Those tusks coming out it’s snout are actually it’s upper canines. They curve backwards as they come out the jaw and then poke through the skin. And they keep curving and growing. They will continue to grow and will sometimes pierce the owners own skull. This lucky guy has a deep enough curve that he’s probably ok.
Mutillidae (Velvet Ant)
It’s official name is the one in bold up there. That’s because most Mutillidae are scarlet or orange and black. Again, I did not use a photoshopped picture. They can sometimes be white, silver or gold. And when they are black and white, they are called Panda Ants. Dawww!
But, surprise surprise, they aren’t ants.
They are actually a species of wingless wasp. Not so cute now, is it?
No, not cute at all. You can’t really see it but, on it’s little ass it has a stinger. No big deal, right? Just a little sting, right? Nah. It’s one of the more painful stings out there. And don’t go thinking about a pre-emptive strike on one. It’s exoskeleton is very strong. So strong that when entomologists try to pin them to display cards they have trouble piercing it with the steel pins.
Anyway, if you’ll excuse me, I wasn’t kidding. I’m hungry. I started a bit peckish, but now I’m famished.
*I’m lying. I’m not that dedicated. The truth is, the pan I need to cook my ‘Texas Hash’ is dirty and I’m procrastinating by typing this post.