When it comes to pointing fingers, weird is good. It makes us laugh, or simply wonder how come such thing can exist. For your enjoyment, below is our Top 5 Weird Animals of the Month of July.
1) The Emperor Tamarin
This must be the wisest in the whole primate world. Its name, intended first as a joke, comes from its similarity with the German emperor Wilhelm II. Its home is in the southwest Amazon Basin, in east Peru, north Bolivia and in the west Brazilian states of Acre and Amazonas.
The fur of the Emperor Tamarin is predominantly grey colored, with yellowish speckles on its chest. The hands and feet are black and the tail is brown. What caught our attention is its long, white mustache, which extends to both sides beyond the shoulders. The animal reaches a length of 24 to 26 cm, plus a 35 cm long tail. It weighs approximately 300 to 400 g.
This primate inhabits tropical rain forests, living deep in the forest and also in open tree-covered areas. It is a diurnal animal, spending the majority of its days in the trees with quick, safe movements and broad jumps among the limbs.
2) The Hagfish
No, this is not a new invention of the Alien series makers. Introducing the Hagfish, a marine craniate of the class Myxini, also known as Hyperotreti. Scientists haven’t decided yet if this beauty is really fish, since they belong to a much more primitive lineage than any other group that is commonly defined fish. Their unusual feeding habits and slime-producing capabilities have led members of the scientific and popular media to dub the hagfish as the most “disgusting” of all sea creatures. We tend to agree on that.
3) The Star-nosed Mole
We’re almost inclined to call this one a cute weirdo. 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 molluscs. It is a good swimmer and can forage along the bottoms of streams and ponds. Like other moles, this animal digs shallow surface tunnels for foraging; often, these tunnels exit underwater. It is active day and night and remains active in winter, when it has been observed tunnelling through the snow and swimming in ice-covered streams. Little is known about the social behavior of the species, but it is suspected that it is colonial.
4) The Proboscis Monkey
No, this guy is not Jewish as you might be tempted to think. It is the Nasalis larvatus also known as Long-nosed Monkey, a reddish-brown arboreal Old World monkey.
The most distinctive trait of this monkey is, as you might have guessed, the male’s large protruding nose. The purpose of the large nose is unclear, but it has been suggested that it is a result of sexual selection. The female Proboscis Monkey prefers big-nosed males, thus propagating the trait.
Males are much larger than females, reaching 72 cm (28 inches) in length, with an up to 75 cm tail, and weighing up to 24 kg (53 pounds). Females are up to 60 cm long, weighing up to 12 kg (26 lb).
The Proboscis Monkey also has a large belly, as a result of its diet. Its digestive system is divided into several parts, with distinctive gut flora, which help in digesting leaves. This digestive process releases a lot of gas, resulting in the monkey’s “bloated” bellies. A side-effect of this unique digestive system is that it is unable to digest ripe fruit, unlike most other simians. The diet consists mainly of fruits, seeds and leaves.
The last weird animal we picked for this month’s TOP 5 is Pokemon! OK, we’re just kidding! Its name is actually Axolotl, the best-known of the Mexican neotenic mole salamanders belonging to the Tiger Salamander complex. Larvae of this species fail to undergo metamorphosis, so the adults remain aquatic and gilled.
The species originates from the lake underlying Mexico City. Axolotls are used extensively in scientific research due to their ability to regenerate most body parts, ease of breeding, and large embryos. They are commonly kept as pets in the United States, Great Britain, Australia, Japan (where they are sold under the name Wooper Rooper) as well as in other countries.
Axolotls should not be confused with waterdogs, the larval stage of the closely related Tiger Salamanders , which is widespread in much of North America which also occasionally become neotenic, nor with mudpuppies , fully aquatic salamanders which are unrelated to the axolotl but which bear a superficial resemblance.
Know any weird animals that should be featured in our next month’s TOP 5? Nominate them below in the comments and we’ll asses their weirdness and worthiness of being a part of Weirdopedia’s weird animals.