That a cheetah can clock a speed of 70 mph while chasing its prey, or a greyhound can jump as high as 27 feet are well-known facts; no doubt. But then, there are other facts, which are a notch ahead of these. Did you, for instance, know that the New Zealand's sheep population is estimated to be ten times more than their human population, or that some lions can have sex with their partners over 50 times a day? There is no dearth of such interesting facts in the world of animals. Here's our attempt to put forth a few of them.
In the Wonderful World of Animals
- The blue whale is considered the loudest animal in the world owing to its tendency to whistle loudly, clocking 188 decibels at times.
- Labrador retrievers were originally used for retrieving fishing nets because of their webbed paws, which enabled them to swim well.
- We only have 32 teeth, but mosquitoes have 47! Similarly, leeches have 32 brains and slugs have 4 noses in the form of 4 'feelers' on their head! Two of these help them sense light, while the other two help them smell.
- Not just humans, even dalmatians can suffer from gout. And here's something you may not easily believe, about 33% dalmatians have to face the problem of 'hearing loss' due to inbreeding.
- Crocodiles swallow stones, as these stones enhance the process of digestion and help them dive deeper. They are believed to be descendants of dinosaurs. Isn't it amazing?
- The daily diet of a dolphin consists of food that weighs about one-third of its own weight. Even more interesting is the fact that these mammals are believed to have evolved around 60 million years ago.
- Beware while touching a sleeping dolphin, as they sleep with one eye open. It only gets weirder, as half of their brain is awake even when they are asleep!
- Dogs express their emotions by making about ten different vocal sounds. If you thought that's amazing, wait till you hear this―cats are able to make over 100 vocal sounds.
- A camel, nicknamed the 'desert ship', has three eyelids per eye. Camels need more eyelids to protect their eyes from sand during sandstorms.
- Newborn kangaroos are called 'joeys'. They can be as small as a coffee bean―that's roughly about 1 inch in length―at the time of birth.
- Feet of butterflies work as their tongues and help them taste!
- An electric eel can kill its prey by producing a shock of up to 650 volts. It can also produce a severe shock while defending itself from predators.
- Hummingbird, which weighs about 1 oz, is the smallest bird in the world. Interestingly, it is the only bird that can fly backwards.
- The Galapagos tortoise has a lifespan of 200 years. Other animals which live that long include koi, whales, and tuataras. On the other hand, gastrotrich, a microscopic animal inhabiting the water, lives for just about 3 to 21 days. It's strange to see such 'discrimination' in the lifespan 'gifted' to animals by nature.
- Moles are known as fast diggers, as they can construct a 300-feet deep tunnel in a single day. They are known to dig more than 15 feet per hour. There exists a star-nosed mole too!
- Antarctica, the Earth's southernmost and coldest continent, is free of reptiles. That, perhaps, has something to do with the fact that they are cold-blooded creatures who can't do without an external source of heat.
- While the venom of a king cobra can kill about 30 people, the poison of a poison arrow frog can kill approximately 2,200 people. Now isn't that strange?
- White is the color we often associate with milk, but the yak's milk is pink in color.
- Humans have sweat glands under their skin, but cows only have sweat glands in their nose.
- The pink oily substance released from the glands in the skin of a hippopotamus, is referred to as 'pink sweat'. It protects the hippo's skin.
I am sure, people of all ages enjoy reading such facts, but remember, animals are not objects of amusement. It's interesting to know about them, but it's more important to create awareness about the need to protect them.