Meet our featured animal, the short-beaked echidna (e-KID-nuh)!
Here are five fun facts about short-beaked echidnas:
- Echidnas are monotremes, or mammals that lay eggs.
- Similar to reptiles, echidnas’ legs protrude outwards and then downwards, resulting in a waddling effect when they walk.
- The echidna has a pointy snout that can sense electrical signals from insect bodies.
- Echidnas do not have teeth, but they do have horny pads in their mouths and on the back of their tongues which grind the prey.
- Baby echidnas are called puggles!
Learn more about short-beaked echidnas >
Meet our featured animal, the Atlantic puffin!
Here are five facts about Atlantic puffins:
- Despite their black and white plumage, puffins are not related to penguins at all. They are members of the Alcidae (auk) family.
- For most of the year, Atlantic puffins live on the open ocean.
- Diving as deep as 60 m (200 ft.), they swim by flapping their wings as if flying through the water and use their feet to steer.
- Atlantic puffins are excellent fliers. Flapping their wings at up to 400 beats per minute, puffins can reach speeds of 88 km/h (55mph).
- When a puffin is around 3-5 years old, it will choose a partner at sea to mate with for life.
Learn more about Atlantic puffins >
Meet our featured animal, the bald eagle!
Here are five fun facts about bald eagles:
- The bald eagle is one of the largest raptors in the world.
- Bald eagles can reach speeds of up to 160 km/hr (100 mph) when diving.
- Using thermal convention currents, bald eagles can climb to up to 3000 m (10,000 ft.) in the air. They can soar for hours using these currents.
- Once coupled, bald eagles will mate for life.
- Bald eagles build enormous nests, called eyries, out of sticks. These substantial nests have been known to weigh up to 900 kg (1 ton).
Learn more about bald eagles >
Meet our featured animal, the green anaconda!
Here are five facts about green anacondas:
- The green anaconda is one of the longest snakes in the world. It is also the heaviest.
- The green anaconda is native to South America, making its home in swamps, marshes and streams.
- Although they use both sight and smell to hunt, green anacondas also have the ability to sense heat emitted by potential prey.
- Anacondas are not venomous; they use constriction instead to subdue their prey.
- For larger prey, the green anaconda can unhinge its jaw to stretch its mouth around the body, consuming the carcass whole.
Learn more about green anacondas >
Meet our featured animal, the capybara!
Here are five facts about capybaras:
- The capybara takes the title of world’s largest rodent.
- Capybaras are semi-aquatic, spending a lot of time in the water.
- Capybaras can stay submerged underwater for up to 5 minutes.
- Capybaras have special digestive adaptations that allow them to absorb enough nutrients from their highly fibrous diet.
- Very social animals, capybaras live in small family groups of about 10-20.
Learn more about capybaras >
Meet our featured animal, the bonobo!
Here are five facts about bonobos:
- Bonobos share 98.5% of our DNA.
- In captivity, bonobos have learned how to communicate in human languages, use tools, and play music.
- Although they resemble chimpanzees, bonobos have the ability to walk bipedally, or on two legs, more easily and for longer amounts of time than chimps.
- Bonobos live harmoniously in matriarchal groups of up to 100 members.
- Bonobos communicate with high-pitched barking sounds.
Learn more about bonobos >
Meet our featured animal, the black-tailed prairie dog!
Here are five facts about black-tailed prairie dogs:
- Prairie dogs live in small, close-knit families called coteries.
- Groups of neighboring coteries form a prairie dog colony.
- Prairie dogs communicate with each other through barking. They can describe a predator by varying the frequency and pitch of their barks.
- Prairie dogs perform jump-yip calls, in which they stand on the mound, throw their head back, and let out a high-pitched bark, sometimes evening toppling onto their backs due to the exertion.
- Although they once numbered in the hundreds of millions, prairie dog populations are now estimated at around 10-20 million.
Learn more about prairie dogs >
Meet our featured animal, the narwhal!
Here are five facts about narwhals:
- The horn on a narwhal is actually a giant, spiraled tooth.
- The long tooth can reach up to 3 m (10 ft.) in length and grows continually to replace wear.
- The name narwhal derives from the old Norse word nar meaning corpse.
- Narwhals travel in groups (or pods) of 15-20 whales.
- Preying on creatures primarily on the bottom of the sea, they dive on average 800 m (.5 mi.), but can go twice that.
Learn more about narwhals >