European Hare

The European Hare (Lepus europaeus) is a lagomorph, specifically a leporid mammal, such as hares and rabbits. It is also known as the Brown Hare.

The European Hare has grey, rufous (red-brown), or brown fur. It has a white underbelly. It has black-tipped elongated ears, long legs, a flexible neck, and a short, stub, white tail, called a scut. It has large incisors (front teeth) as well as cheek teeth. It has orange-brown eyes.

Its head and body length can range from 60-75 centimetres (24-30 inches), with a tail length of 7-11 centimetres (3-4 inches). Its ears range from 9-11 centimetres (3.5-4 inches).

Continue reading “European Hare”

Common Brimstone Butterfly

The Common Brimstone Butterfly (Gonepteryx rhamni) is a medium-sized insect in the Pieridae family – white, yellow, and orange butterflies.

The male and female Common Brimstone Butterfly look different. The male has yellow wings with iridescence. The female has greenish-white wings with no iridescence. It has one small orange-brown spot on each of its four wings. Its body is dark-brown. It has medium-sized antennae.

Continue reading “Common Brimstone Butterfly”

Northern Shoveler

The Northern Shoveler (Spatula clypeata) is a freshwater, wetlands dabbling duck. It is a bird. Spatula means spoon – it has a spoon-shaped beak.

The Northern Shoveler has a large, broad, greyish spoon-shaped beak, called a spatulate beak. It often has an orange colour on the cutting edge of its beak and lower jaw. The male has an iridescent dark-green head, white chest, chestnut belly, and chestnut side feathers. In the breeding season, the male has a white crescent on each side of its face. The female is pale mottled brown.

Continue reading “Northern Shoveler”

Caucasian Shield Bug

The Caucasian Shield Bug (Apodiphus amygdali) is an insect in the Pentatomidae family, subfamily Pentatominae. It is also known as the Stink Bug because it has an unpleasant smell when it is squashed.

The Caucasian Shield Bug is blackish-brown with a trapezoidal shape (the shape of a shield). The shield is called a scutellum. The shield has yellowish speckled markings. Its antennae have five segments (Pentatominae means ‘five segments’). Its greyish-black legs, called tarsi, have three segments. It has forewings (front wings) called hemelytra, and it also has hindwings (back wings). It has a sucking mouthpart.

Continue reading “Caucasian Shield Bug”

Variegated

What does variegated mean?

Variegated means that the animal has different colours, usually irregular markings, patches, or streaks. It is a variety of colours, or varicoloured.

Oscillated Skink

The Oscillated Skink (Chalcides ocellatus) is a lizard – and a reptile. It is also known as the Eyed Skink or the Gongilo.

The Oscillated Skink is elongated with a small head. Each foot has five toes. It is varied in colour, but it is usually light brown with dark-brown and white markings. It has a creamy-white underbelly. It has dark eyes and a dark-coloured tongue. It has very short legs, with five toes on each foot.

Continue reading “Oscillated Skink”

Cambodian Short-Horned Grasshopper

The Cambodian Short-Horned Grasshopper (family Acrididae) is an insect.

The Cambodian Short-Horned Grasshopper is bright green on its upperparts and yellow-green on its underbelly. It has a black line from its eye, running along the length of its body. It has a pair of wings and short antennae. Its back legs are enlarged, which enable it to jump long distances. Its legs have three segments.

Continue reading “Cambodian Short-Horned Grasshopper”

Cat, Cheetah, Leopard, Lion, Tiger Eyes: What’s the difference?

What are the similarities or differences between the eyes of a Cat (Felis catus), Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus), Leopard (Panthera pardus), Lion (Panthera leo), and Tiger (Panthera tigris)?

The Domestic Cat is nocturnal, active at night. The Cheeth and the Lion are diurnal, active during the day. The Leopard and the Tiger are crepuscular, active at dawn and dusk.

The eyes of a nocturnal animal have vertical pupils that look like a black line, called slitted eyes. The eyes of a diurnal or crepuscular animal have round pupils.

Continue reading “Cat, Cheetah, Leopard, Lion, Tiger Eyes: What’s the difference?”

Eclectus Parrot

The Eclectus Parrot (Eclectus roratus) is medium-sized bird.

The Eclectus Parrot male and female look very different. The male is bright green and the female is mostly bright red. The male is bright green with blue primary feathers and red sides. Its short tail is edged with a narrow band of creamy-yellow, but is mainly green. The female is bright red with a darker colour on her back and wings. Her underwing coverts are purple. Her short tail is edged with yellow-orange above and orange below. The male has an orange and black beak: orange on the upper mandible and black on the lower mandible. The female has an all-black beak. Both have yellow to orange eyes.

Continue reading “Eclectus Parrot”

CREATURE FEATURE: Amur Tiger

The Amur Tiger (Panthera tigris tigris or Panthera tigris altaica) is also known as the Siberian Tiger, the Manchurian Tiger, or the Korean Tiger. It is a large wild cat, and a mammal.

The Amur Tiger is reddish-rusty brown with narrow black transverse stripes. It has short legs and a long tail. It has moderately thick, coarse fur. The winter coat is thicker, longer, softer, and silkier. It has whiskers and hair on the back of its head and the top of its neck is elongated.

Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Amur Tiger”

Zygodactylous Feet – Chameleon Feet

The Chameleon has zygodactylous feet. Zygo means paired, joined, or fused, and dactyl means digit (finger or toe). Scientists would like a more appropriate word, because the chameleon does not have true zygodactylous feet, like the parrot.

It has five toes on each foot. The toes are grouped into two fascicles (a bundle of structures).

Two or three toes in each fascicle are fused together, which makes its feet look like tongs (the tongs people use in the kitchen to pick up food).

Continue reading “Zygodactylous Feet – Chameleon Feet”

Chameleon

The Chameleon (family Chamaeleonidae) is a lizard – and a reptile.

The Chameleon can be a variety of colours, and many can change colour to match its environment – this is called camouflage. It is usually green, brown, olive-green, or grey-brown. It is elongated, usually with a raised or slightly-domed back, and a tail that can curl around plants. It often has a crest of spines along its back, and a fleshy lump at the back of its head. It has zygodactylous (fused) feet for climbing trees. It has a long tongue, and independently mobile eyes with stereoscopic vision.

Continue reading “Chameleon”

Vervet Monkey – Babies

The Vervet Monkey (Chlorocebus pygerythrus), from Africa, lives in a hierarchical group. A hierarchy is a system of status or authority, from the leader or leaders to each member of the family order.

Baby Vervet Monkeys play and fight amongst each other. Babies younger than three years old fight for hierarchical positions. Young Vervet Monkeys older than three years old fight more aggressively and for conflict reasons.

Continue reading “Vervet Monkey – Babies”

Eurasian Common Merganser

The Eurasian Common Merganser (Mergus merganser merganser) is a freshwater bird – a large duck. It is also known as the Goosander or a Sawbill.

The Eurasian Common Merganser has a whitish-cream body with a salmon-pink tinge. Its head is black with an iridescent green sheen. It has a crest, but it usually lies flat, and is not often raised. Its rump and tail are grey, and its wings are white on the inner half and black on the outer half. Its beak and legs are red to brownish-red. The female is mainly grey with a reddish-brown head, white chin, and white feathers on its wings.

Continue reading “Eurasian Common Merganser”