Cow facts and fallacies – standing, laying down, walking

Here are some facts and fallacies about the cow – standing, laying down, and walking.  

Standing: A cow sleeps while standing up.

A cow often closes its eyes to rest while standing up, but it sleeps laying down on its side or on its stomach. A cow is a domestic animal, not a wild animal, and it does not need to quickly escape its predators. It dozes several times throughout the day for 7-14 hours, but The Cattle Site says it actually sleeps for only about 3 hours per day, but not all at once. 

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How do snakes move?

How do snakes move?

Snakes do not have legs, so they slither and slide. But what does this mean?

Snake locomotion (movement) can be serpentine, concertina, rectilinear, or sidewinding.

Serpentine movement is also called lateral undulation, and it is the most common way for snakes to move. The movement looks like an ‘S’ shape. Terrestrial snakes, that live on the ground, use this type of movement. Aquatic snakes, that live in water, also use this type of movement. 

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Plantigrade Locomotion

What is plantigrade locomotion?

Plantigrade locomotion is the way some animals walk with their toes and metatarsals (heels) flat on the ground.

Terrestrial (land) mammals have three ways of walking:

(1) digitigrade (walking on their toes with their heels permanently raised),

(2) unguligrade (walking on the nail of their toes – the hoof – with the heel permanently raised), and 

(3) plantigrade (walking with their toes and heels on the ground).

The leg of a plantigrade mammal includes the bones of the upper leg, called the femur and humerus, and the bones of the lower leg, called the metatarsals and metacarpals. 

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CREATURE FEATURE: Giant Pacific Octopus

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.

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The Coelacanth (Latimeria chalumnaeor Latimeria menadoensis) is a large, rare, deep sea marine (saltwater) fish. It is a lobe-finned fish related to the Lungfish. The word Coelacanth means ‘hollow spine’ which refers to its hollow spine fins. It is often referred to as a ‘living fossil.’

The Coelacanth is a plump, heavy fish with a three-lobed caudal (vertical) fin. It has a secondary tail that extends past the primary tail. It has thick scales like armour. Its eyes are very large.

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One foot, two feet …

What is an animal with one foot, two feet, three feet …?

An appendage, such as a foot or a leg, is used for locomotion – walking, moving, or running.

Ped or pod means foot (leg) or feet (legs).

A mollusk, such as a snail or a slug, is an example of an animal with one foot. It is a gastropod – it is a body of one piece. Gastropod means stomach foot.

An animal that walks with two feet is a biped. A bird is a biped.

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Brain Coral (Diploria labyrinthiformis) is also known as Grooved Brain Coral. Corals are in the phylum Cnidaria, and the class Anthozoa. Corals are divided into three sub-classes: Hexacorallia, Octocorallia, and Ceriantharia. Brain Coral is in the Hexacorallia sub-class, and in the genus Diploria. It is a marine invertebrate (without a backbone). It is an animal (not a plant).

Brain Coral is a stony or hard coral. It looks like the human brain. It is hemispherical and can be brown, yellow, or grey. It has deep valleys and long snake-like ridges.

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Epaulette Shark

The Epaulette Shark (Hemiscyllium ocellatum) is a long-tailed carpet shark in the Hemiscyllidae family.

The Epaulette Shark is light brown with black spots. It has a large black spot behind each pectoral fin. It is called an eyespot because it looks like a large eye. The black spot has a white border. It has a long, slender body with paddle-shaped fins. At the tip of its nose it has a pair of small barbels (like whiskers). It has oval-shaped eyes.

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American Alligator

The American Alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) is a large reptile, and also a crocodilian,  in the Alligatoridae family and Crocodilia order. Crocodiles, alligators, gharial, and caimans are all crocodilians.

The American Alligator is dark grey, black or olive-brown, with a broad U-shaped snout (nose) and sharp, triangular teeth. Its teeth are not visible when its mouth is closed. Its underbelly is creamy-yellow. It has a long tail and short legs with claws.

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