The Eastern Olive Sunbird (Cyanomitra olivacea) is a small bird in the Nectariniidae family of passerine sunbirds.
The Eastern Olive Sunbird is olive in colour. It has short wings and a short tail. Its beak is long, thin, black, and arched. It has small black eyes and black legs.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Eastern Olive Sunbird”
The Red-Crowned Parrot (Amazona viridigenalis) is a bird in the Psittacidae family of parrots. It is also called the Green-Cheeked Amazon Parrot or Mexican Red-Headed Parrot.
The Red-Crowned Parrot is green with a bright red forehead and crown, dark-blue streak behind the eyes, and light-green cheeks. Some have red and blue feathers under their wings. It has a white eye-ring with bright yellow eyes. It has a beige beak and cere. It has grey or beige legs.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Red-Crowned Parrot”
The True Glass Snail (Aegopinella nitidula) is a small, air-breathing, land pulmonate gastropod mollusc in the Gastrodontidae family of glass snails. It is an invertebrate, because it does not have a backbone. Its shell is its exo-skeleton (outside skeleton).
The True Glass Snail has a spiral, heliciform shell that is flattened and disc-shaped with a low spire, like it is a bit squashed. The opening lacks a thick margin like other land snails have. Instead, its shell is thin and light. The shell is almost transparent, as if made of glass, but it usually has light-brown, amber, or dark-brown markings.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: True Glass Snail”
The Amazon Tree Boa (Corallus hortulanus) is a reptile in the Boidae family of non-venomous, colubrid, boa constrictor snakes. It is a boid (pronounced bo-id). It is also known as the Garden Tree Boa or the Macabrel.
The Amazon Tree Boa is long and slim. It varies in base colour from black, brown, grey, red, and orange to yellow. Its patterns can be banded, speckled, rhomboid shapes, or completely plain with no patterns or markings. It has a distinct head and it has dark, rounded eyes. It has sharp, long, needle-like teeth.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Amazon Tree Boa”
The Wonga Pigeon (Leucosarcia melanoleuca) is a medium-sized bird in the Columbidae family of pigeons.
The Wonga Pigeon is plump with a short neck, broad wings, and a long tail. It is pale blue-grey with black feathers, and a creamy-white head. Its underbelly is white with dotted dark-grey spots, with a white V-shape on its chest. Its eys are dark red-brown with pink eye-rings. Its legs are red.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Wonga Pigeon”
The Quokka (Setonix brachyurus) is a medium-sized macropod marsupial mammal. It is related to the kangaroo and the wallaby.
The Quokka has a small, brown, stocky, furry body with strong hind (back) legs, rounded ears, and a short, broad head. Its underbelly is buff coloured. It looks like a miniature kangaroo, but it can climb small trees and shrubs.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Quokka”
The Barred Catfish (Pseudoplatystoma fasciatum) is a large freshwater fish in the Pimelodidae family of long-whiskered catfish. It is also called the Barred Sorubim. It is related to the Tiger Shovelnose Catfish.
The Barred Catfish is dark-grey with black loop-like stripes and spots. Its head is depressed with a wide mouth and long whiskers, called barbels. Its eyes and teeth are small.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Barred Catfish”
The Common Leopard Gecko (Eublepharis Mascularis) is a small ground-dwelling reptilian lizard.
The Common Leopard Gecko is pale beige with dark-brown markings and spots. Its back is covered with small lumps. It has short legs with short nails on its toes, which are used for gripping objects (it does not have sticky pads on its feet). It has movable eyelids. It has about 100 small teeth. It has a thick, fleshy tail.
It can regenerate its tail if if drops off. This is called caudal autotomy. It regularly sheds its skin (about once a month). This is called moulting.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Common Leopard Gecko”
The Gouldian Finch (Erythura gouldiaeor Chloebia goldiae) is a small passerine bird in the Estrildidae family. It is an estrildid. It is also known as the Gould Finch or the Rainbow Finch.
The Gouldian Finch is brightly coloured and varied, with mainly black, green, yellow, and red markings. The male has a purple chest and the female has a light mauve chest. Its head is red, black, or yellow. Its beak is light-coloured with a red tip. It has pale legs and feet.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Gouldian Finch”
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.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Antillean Manatee”
The Wolverine (Gulo gulo) is a carnivorous mammal in the Mustelidae family It is a mustelid. Gulomeans ‘glutton’ in Latin. It is also known as the Glutton, Carajou, Skunk Bear, or Quickhatch. It is not a wolf and it is not a skunk and it is not a bear. It is closely related to the Weasel.
The Wolverine looks like a small bear. It is stocky and muscular, with thick, oily blackish-grey fur that is naturally frost resistant (hydrophobic). Its face has a light-silver mask. It has small eyes, and short, rounded ears. It has short legs and wide paws that act like snow-shoes. It has sharp claws. Its tail is bushy.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Wolverine”
The African Forest Buffalo (Syncerus caffer nanus) is a sub-species of the African buffalo. It is also known as the Dwarf Buffalo or the Congo Buffalo. It is related to the Cape Buffalo.
The African Forest Buffalo has reddish-brown fur with darker fur around its face. Its ears have long fringes of hair. It has short, backward-facing horns.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: African Forest Buffalo”
The Toco Toucan (Ramphastos toco) is a large bird. It is also known as the Common Toucan or the Giant Toucan.
The Toco Toucan has a black body, white cheeks, white throat, white chest, and white uppertail coverts, with red undertail coverts. It has a very large, yellow-orange beak with a black band at the base and a large spot at the tip. Its beak is hollow and light. It has bright blue eye-rings. Its tongue is long and flat. Its legs are dark-grey. The male and female have a similar appearance.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Toco Toucan”
The Addax (Addax nasomaculatus) is an ungulate (hoofed) mammal in the antelope family. It is also known as the White Antelope and the Screwhorn Antelope. It is similar to the Scimitar Oryx.
The Addax has pale-coloured (white or sandy blonde) fur in summer that darkens to greyish-brown in winter. It has white hindquarters and legs. The hair on its head, neck, and shoulders is long and brown. Its head has brown or black markings that form an X-shape over its nose. The male and female have long, spiraled, and twisted horns. Long black hairs protrude between its horns, ending in a short mane on its neck. Its tail is short, ending with a tuft of black hair.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Addax”
The Siberian Sturgeon (Acipenser baeri) is a freshwater fish.
The Siberian Sturgeon is elongated, similar to a shark. It has smooth scaleless skin (unlike fish that have scales). It has five lateral rows of bony plates called scutes.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Siberian Sturgeon”
The Golden Mantella Frog (Mantella aurantiaca) is a small poisonous amphibian.
The Golden Mantella Frog is yellow, orange, or red. Its inner leg has red flash markings.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Golden Mantella Frog”
The Binturong (Arctictis binturong) is an arboreal mammal. It is also known as a Bearcat. It is not related to bears and it is not related to cats. It is closely related to the Palm Civet. It is a viverrid.
The Binturong has a grey-black, thick, furry body with short legs. Its tail is long, bushy, curls inwards at the end, and is prehensile, which means that it can wrap around branches. It has a short, turned-up, black rounded nose covered with bristly hairs. It has long whiskers.
Its eyes are large and black, with a vertical pupil. It has short, rounded ears, edged with white, with tufts of black hair. It has six short rounded incisor teeth in each jaw, two long sharp canine teeth, and six molar teeth on each side of its jaw. Its five toes have long claws. It has musk glands that emit a scent.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Binturong”
The Luzon Bleeding-Heart Dove (Gallicolumba luzonica) is a medium-sized bird in the dove and pigeon family of ground birds.
The Luzon Bleeding-Heart Dove is grey with iridescent purple, blue, or green feathers. It has a whitish-buff underbelly that has a reddish stripe that looks like blood on its chest. The male has a brighter red patch than the female. Its wings are grey with black bands. Its body is rounded, with a short tail and long pink legs.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Luzon Bleeding-Heart Dove”
The Giant Pacific Octopus (Enteroctopus dofleini) is a large, marine invertebrate (soft-bodied) mollusc in the Octopoda order. Octopoda means eight limbs. It is a cephalopod, related to the squid, cuttlefish, and nautilus.
The Octopus has a greyish, soft hollow body called a mantle. Its body can change shape and squeeze into small gaps. The mantle has gills (to breath), a brain, and a parrot-beaked mouth. Surrounding the mouth is eight limbs with suckers. It has two large eyes with excellent sight.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Giant Pacific Octopus”
The Blyth’s Loach (Syncrossus berdmorei) is a tropical freshwater fish. It is in the Botiidae (botiid) family of pointface loaches, such as the Tiger Botia.
The Blyth’s Loach has an elongated body with red fins that have dark spots. It has regular dark greyish vertical stripes and black spots near its head. Its face has thin horizontal greyish stripes. It has short whiskers, called barbels, on its snout (nose). It has a downward-facing mouth.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Blyth’s Loach”