Tag: animals

  • Creature Feature: Manatees, The Ocean’s Pacifists

    Creature Feature: Manatees, The Ocean’s Pacifists

    I firmly believe that if we replaced all hippos with manatees, the world would be a better place (I’m joking; hippopotamus dung is great for the environment but their attitude is not). Manatees are the most peaceful, serene animals in existence and it’s beautiful how simple they are. They’re such pacifists that they don’t even […]

  • Creature Feature: Hungry Hippos

    Creature Feature: Hungry Hippos

    Hippos are one of the few animals that genuinely freak me out. Hyenas? Love ‘em. Vultures? They’re my favourite bird! But the thought of meeting a hippo in the wild absolutely terrifies me.  Hippopotamuses – meaning “rive horses” in Greek – should be just as cute and cuddly as manatees. They’re big lazy herbivores who […]

  • Creature Feature: The Prehistoric Crocodile

    Creature Feature: The Prehistoric Crocodile

    This post comes at the request of my mum, who said “write about crocodiles and maybe I’ll like them!” And with the crocodile being one of Earth’s oldest creatures, I was more than happy to oblige.  I’m Australian, which means I grew up watching Steve Irwin and worrying I’d see a crocodile in any body […]

  • Creature Feature: The Slimy Salamander

    Creature Feature: The Slimy Salamander

    The salamander is not a singular species, but a family of amphibians (animals that can live on land and water). This family includes true salamanders, newts, and some fun names like hellbenders and mud puppies. They all have tails, stumpy bodies, and generally slimy skin. Some of them are plain, some are brightly coloured, but […]

  • Top 3 Symbiotic Relationships in Nature

    Top 3 Symbiotic Relationships in Nature

    “Survival of the fittest” is an oft-quoted, oft-misunderstood saying that implies it’s every animal for themselves in the wild. But the truth is, many animals of different species co-exist peacefully, even having mutually beneficial relationships. When two different kinds of animals work together in symbiotic relationships, it’s known as mutualism. Unlike parasites, both parties get something […]

  • Creature Feature: Spotted Hyenas

    Creature Feature: Spotted Hyenas

    I know what the common perception of hyenas is: cruel, cowardly scavengers who leech off of other predators’ hunts. When we think of these animals, we most often think of the trio from The Lion King.  Disney actually got in a bit of trouble over its depiction of spotted hyenas. The animators went to the […]

  • Creature Feature: Elephants, the Gentle Giants of the Land

    Creature Feature: Elephants, the Gentle Giants of the Land

    Elephants are truly gorgeous creatures. While I usually write about the weird and unnerving animals on this blog, I want to also appreciate these gentle giants.  Elephants are known for their size and strength, and are symbols of wisdom and peace. They are the largest land mammals on earth and have caused their fair share […]

  • Creature Feature: Cuckoo Birds and Brood Parasites

    Creature Feature: Cuckoo Birds and Brood Parasites

    When we think of parasites, we typically think of unpleasant creepy-crawlies like leeches or ticks. Today I’d like to introduce you to the brood parasite, the most famous of those being the cuckoo bird. You might recognise the cuckoo as the little bird that pops out of old clocks, but it’s really their parenting habits […]

  • The American “Fearsome Critters” and Other Tall Tales

    The American “Fearsome Critters” and Other Tall Tales

    I’m an Australian, and playing some good-natured pranks on tourists is a time-honoured tradition. Our most famous of these pranks is probably the Drop Bear, an aggressive relative of the koala that drops from trees onto unsuspecting prey. I was delighted to discover that we are not the only country that does this! It’s a […]

  • Nature’s Clean-Up Crew: An Ode to Vultures

    Winged heralds of death and decay, they say, circling the skies in a halo of doom.  When it comes to judging a book by its cover, vultures have it the worst.  They’re nature’s clean-up crew, tidying up the messes that would otherwise fester and rot in the sun. Their stomachs kill diseases from prey that […]