Diana Monkey

The Diana Monkey (Cercopithecus diana diana) is a primate mammal from Africa.

The Diana Monkey is black or dark-grey with a white throat and a white crescent-shaped band across its eyebrow. It has a white ruff around its neck and a white beard. Its underarms are also white. There is a white stripe down its upper legs. The back of its upper legs and its lower back is chestnut-coloured.

Continue reading “Diana Monkey”

Narrow-Striped Mongoose

The Narrow-Striped Mongoose (Mungotictis decemlineata) is a small mammal.

The Narrow-Striped Mongoose has rough light-grey fur with light-brown patches on its underbelly and feet, a dark-grey crown, and very narrow brown stripes on its back. There are small white patches on the sides of its eyes. It has a pointy nose, small ears, and a long furry tail.  Its eyes are small and dark. It has long, strong claws that dig through the soil. Their claws do not retract, so they are always visible.

Continue reading “Narrow-Striped Mongoose”

Salt Licks and Salt Pans

A salt lick, also called a mineral lick, is a place where animals go to lick the the salt and other minerals that have formed a deposit on the ground. It is naturally occurring. A salt lick is white.

Animals benefit from the minerals, such as phosphorus, sodium, calcium, iron, magnesium, sulphur, potassium, and zinc.

The minerals help to develop healthy bones and muscles.

Animals that prefer salt licks include antelopes, elephants, lions, moose, tapirs, cattle, sheep, goats, foxes, squirrels, and porcupines.

Continue reading “Salt Licks and Salt Pans”

Domestic Pig

The Domestic Pig (Sus scrofa domesticus or Sus domesticus) is an even-toed ungulate mammal. It is an artiodactyl.

The Pig has a stout body with sparse bristles (hair) on its skin. It has hardly any hair, and it is considered to be hairless (like the elephant and rhinoceros). It has a long, pointed head with a snout. It has 44 teeth (humans have 32 teeth). It is an ungulate – hoofed feet – with two toes on each foot.

Continue reading “Domestic Pig”

African Elephant and Asian Elephant: what’s the difference?

What is the difference between an African Elephant and an Asian Elephant?

The African Elephant (Loxodonta africana) and the Asian Elephant (Elephas maximus) are both land mammals.

The African Elephant has larger ears than the Asian Elephant.

The African Elephant has ears shaped like the continent of Africa; the Asian Elephant has ears shaped like the country of India.

The African Elephant has no frontal hump on its head; the Asian Elephant has a frontal hump on its head.

Continue reading “African Elephant and Asian Elephant: what’s the difference?”

Asian Elephant

The Asian Elephant (Elephas maximus) is a large land mammal.

The Asian Elephant has grey, almost hairless, wrinkled skin over its body. Its nose is a long trunk, its ears are fan-like flaps, and its tail is short. It has small dark eyes, a small mouth, and large forward and upturned ivory tusks. Females usually do not have tusks, but might have barely visible tushes (seen only when the mouth is open).

Its legs are thick with large pads for feet. Its front feet have a round sole, and the hind (back) feet have an oval-shaped sole. Its feet have distinct nail-like structures on each foot.

Continue reading “Asian Elephant”

Common Brushtail Possum

The Common Brushtail Possum (Trichosurus Vulpecula) is an Australian and New Zealand marsupial mammal. Trichosurus Vulpecula means furry tailed little fox, but it is not a fox, and it is not related to the fox.

The Common Brushtail Possum is silver-grey, brown, black, or a golden colour, with large pointed ears and an extremely bushy tail that can wrap around branches. Its inner ears and nose are pink. It has short, fine black whiskers, and big, round brown eyes. Its feet have sharp claws with a strong grip.

Continue reading “Common Brushtail Possum”

Oryx Teeth

The Oryx (Oryx sp) is an antelope, which is a hoofed ruminant mammal.

Ruminants have well-developed molar teeth, which grind plant-based food – called the cud – into food balls.

The Oryx, like all antelopes, has no upper incisors. Instead, it has a hard, upper gum pad. The lower incisors use the gum pad to bite and tear grass stems and leaves.

Continue reading “Oryx Teeth”

Lesser Kudu and Greater Kudu: what is the difference?

What is the difference between the Lesser Kudu and the Greater Kudu?

The Lesser Kudu (Tragelaphus imberbis)and the Greater Kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros) are both African antelopes.

The Lesser Kudu and the Greater Kudu are both ungulate mammals (they have hoofed feet).

The Lesser Kudu has no beard or fringe. The Greater Kudu has a beard along its throat or a white fringe.

The Lesser Kudu has more white stripes on its body than the Greater Kudu.

The Lesser Kudo has up to 14 vertical white stripes on its body. The Greater Kudu has 6-10 vertical white stripes on its body.

Continue reading “Lesser Kudu and Greater Kudu: what is the difference?”

CREATURE FEATURE: Lesser Kudu

The Lesser Kudu (Tragelaphus imberbis) is a medium-sized African antelope. It is an ungulate mammal (it has hoofed feet).

The Lesser Kudu is narrow-bodied with a small head and huge cupped ears. It has a distinct white patch on its upper and lower throat, with two white cheek spots and a chevron stripe from its eyes. It is blue-grey, darkening in colour with age. It has up to 14 vertical bright white stripes on its body. It has a short bushy tail, black-tipped with white underneath. On its legs are black garters (a stripe or line). Only males have horns.

Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Lesser Kudu”

Greater Kudu

The Greater Kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros) is a very tall African antelope. It is an ungulate mammal (it has hoofed feet).

The Greater Kudu is narrow-bodied with a small head and huge cupped ears. It has a chevron stripe between its eyes, and two white cheek spots. It has a beard along its throat, usually only on males. Females may have a white fringe on her throat. It is blue-grey, darkening in colour with age. It has 6-10 vertical white stripes on its body. It has a short bushy tail, black-tipped with white underneath. On its legs are black garters (a stripe or line). Only males have horns – the horns have two spirals.

Continue reading “Greater Kudu”

Smith’s Bush Squirrel

The Smith’s Bush Squirrel (Paraxerus cepapi) is also called the Tree Squirrel or the Yellow-Footed Squirrel. It is a common African bush squirrel – it is a mammal.

The Smith’s Bush Squirrel has pale grey to brown short fur. Its head and legs are a rusty colour. It has large dark eyes, small ears, and short, black whiskers. Its chest varies from yellowish to buff or white. Its belly is white, and its feet are yellowish. Its tail is long and bushy.

Continue reading “Smith’s Bush Squirrel”

CREATURE FEATURE: Common Degu

The Common Degu (Octodon degus) is a small rodent from Chile, related to the chinchilla and guinea pig. It is a mammal.

The Common Degu has brown fur with a creamy-yellow underbelly, and yellow around the eyes. It has a paler band around the neck. It has a long, thin tail with a tufted, black tip, dark sparsely furred ears, and pale grey toes. Its fifth toe is small with a nail, rather than a claw, on the fore feet. Its hind feet are bristled. Its cheek teeth are shaped like figures of eight – and that’s the meaning of Octodon.
Continue reading “CREATURE FEATURE: Common Degu”