CREATURE FEATURE: Antillean Manatee

The Antillean Manatee (Trichechus manatus manatus) is an aquatic, marine (saltwater) mammal in the Sirenia order of dugongs. It is also known as a Sea Cow, West Indian Manatee, or Caribbean Manatee. It is not a seal. It is related to the dugong and the elephant. 

The Antillean Manatee looks like a large, grey seal with flippers and a paddle tail. It has lungs, not gills, because it is a mammal, and therefore it needs to come to the surface to breathe. It has a prehensile snout (nose), like an elephant, so that it can grab water plants and bring them to its mouth. It has 6-8 teeth in each jaw. It has short, sparse, sensitive hairs called vibrissae. Each individual hair is called a vibrissal. The vibrissae around its mouth are like whiskers.

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What is the difference between the Chacoan Peccary and the Southern White-Lipped Peccary?

What is the difference between the Chacoan Peccary (Catagonus wagneri) and the Southern White-Lipped Peccary (Tayassu pecari albirostris)?

The Chacoan Peccary and the Southern White-Lipped Peccary are both pig-like ungulate (hoofed) mammals with short legs, and small, narrow feet. 

The Chacoan Peccary and the Southern White-Lipped Peccary have a tough, leathery, pig-like snout (nose).  

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Chacoan Peccary

The Chacoan Peccary (Catagonus wagneri) is an ungulate (hoofed) mammal.

The Chacoan Peccary has a rounded body with a large head, long snout (nose) and short legs – similar to a wild pig. Its nose looks like a pig’s nose. It has grey or brown bristly fur. It has longer, darker hair along its spine, and white fur on its shoulders. It has white hairs around its mouth. It has a third hind (back) toe.

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Clown Triggerfish

The Clown Triggerfish (Balistoides conspicillum) is a marine (saltwater) fish in the Balistidae family of triggerfish. It is also known as the Clown Trigger and the Bigspotted Triggerfish. 

The Clown Triggerfish has a flat, laterally compressed, oval-shaped body. It is black with the lower half of its body covered with large, white spots. The top part of its body is yellowish with a leopard-skin pattern. It has a yellow ring around its mouth, surrounded by a thin, white ring. It has yellowish markings near its tail. It has a small mouth with sharp teeth. Its fins are white and its tail is white with two black margins.

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Damselfish

The Damselfish (Chromis chromis) is a small ray-finned marine (saltwater) fish in the Pomacentridae family of damselfish. It is also known as the Mediterranean Chromis. 

The Damselfish is a large-scaled dark-brown fish. It has an oval, laterally compressed body. It has large eyes and a protruding mouth. It has a set of small teeth in three rows. 

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Adder

The Adder (Vipera berus berus) is a venomous snake. It is also known as the Common European Adder or the Common European Viper.

The Adder has a thick body with keeled (ridged or rough) scales and a large head. Its colour and pattern vary, but it is usually light-coloured with small crossbars or entirely brown with faint or clear dark-brown markings. It usually has a zig-zag pattern. Its eyes are quite large.

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Neon Tetra

The Neon Tetra (Paracheirodon innesi) is a small freshwater fish in the Characidae family of tetras. 

The Neon Tetra has a flat body with a light-blue back over a silver-white abdomen. It has an iridescent blue horizontal stripe along each side of its body from its nose to its rear fin, and an iridescent red stripe from the middle of its body to its tail fin. The colours become grey or black at night, when it rests. It has blue eyes covered with a blue stripe. 

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What is the difference between the European Wasp and the European Paper Wasp?

What is the difference between the European Wasp (Vespula vulgaris) and the European Paper Wasp (Polistes dominula)?

The European Wasp, also called the Common Wasp, and the European Paper Wasp are both vespid insects.

The European Wasp and the European Paper Wasp are both social wasps living in colonies with a queen wasp and worker wasps.

The European Wasp and the European Paper Wasp both have black and yellow bodies with yellowish-orange legs.

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European Paper Wasp

The European Paper Wasp (Polistes dominula) is a hymenopteran insect, a winged insect related to bees, wasps, and hornets. It is a vespid and a polist wasp in the Polistini tribe. It is a social wasp. It is also known as the Common Poet. 

The European Paper Wasp has a slender yellow and black body and long yellowish-orange legs. It drags its legs behind it when it is flying, because its legs are long. Its narrow wings are orange with dark tips. It has large eyes. Its antennae are yellowish-orange with club-shaped tips. 

It has a venomous stinger at the end of its abdomen. It can sting multiple times because the stinger stays in the body (the stinger of bees comes out of the body when the bee stings an animal, so it can only sting once). 

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Siberian Ibex

The Siberian Ibex (Capra sibirica) is a large, wild ungulate (hoofed) goat. 

The Siberian Ibex is a goat with dark-brown, light-tan or reddish fur. Its underbelly has lighter fur. It sheds its fur in spring. It has a short neck and straight back. The male has a longer beard than the female. The male and the female have horns, but the female has smaller, grey-brown horns and the male has black horns. The horns have circular rings.

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Powder Blue Tang

The Powder Blue Tang (Acanthurus leucosternon) is a marine (saltwater) fish in the surgeonfish family. It is also known as the Powder-Blue Surgeonfish. 

The Powder Blue Tang is blue with a streak of yellow on its dorsal fin. Its face is blue-black and its mouth, throat, and pelvic fins are white. It has an oval-shaped, flat, compressed body. It has a small mouth shaped like a parrot’s beak, with sharp teeth. 

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Long-Bodied Daddy Long-Legs Spider

The Long-Bodied Daddy Long-Legs Spider (Pholcus phalangiodes) is an arachnid in the Pholcidae family. It is also known as the Cellar Spider.

The Long-Bodied Daddy Long-Legs Spider has a light-brown or dark-brown carapace (shell) and a brown, beige or grey abdomen, but mostly it looks pale and translucent (clear). It has scissor-like jaws, called chelicerae, that move from side to side. It has eight small eyes grouped closely together. It has very long, thin legs that are banded at the joints. 

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Tomato Clownfish

The Tomato Clownfish (Amphiprion frenatus) is a tropical marine (saltwater) fish in the Pomacentridae family of clownfish and damselfish. It is also known as the Blackback Anemonefish, Bridled Anemonefish, Fire Clown, or Red Tomato Clownfish.

The Tomato Clownfish has an oval-shaped, flat, compressed body. It is yellow and orange, or reddish, or blackish. Many have white bars or patches behind their eyes, with a black outline. The female is mainly blackish on her sides.

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Raccoon Butterflyfish

The Raccoon Butterflyfish (Chaetodon lunula) is a tropical marine (saltwater) fish in the Chaetodontidae family of butterflyfish. It is also known as the Crescent-Masked Butterflyfish, Halfmoon Butterflyfish, Raccoon Coralfish, and Redstriped Butterflyfish. 

The Raccoon Butterflyfish has a flat, compressed, oval-shaped body. Its colour varies considerably. Usually, it has a pattern of oblique reddish-brown stripes on its sides. It has a raccoon mask over its eyes, with a white space between the dark crown and eye area. It has a black spot near its tail. Its snout (nose) is usually yellow.

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Southern Stingray

The Southern Stingray (Hypanus americanus) is a marine (saltwater) whiptail stingray.

The Southern Stingray has a flat, diamond-shaped body with sharp, angular corners. It is muddy-brown, olive, or grey with a white underbelly. It has a barb at the end of its long, thin tail. The barb is serrated (saw-like) and is covered with poisonous mucous. Its wing-like fins propel it through the water. Its eyes are on top of its head. 

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