What is the difference between the Emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) and the Greater Rhea (Rhea Americana)?
The Emu and the Greater Rhea are large fightless birds. The Emu and the Greater Rhea are both ratites, because they cannot fly (the Ostrich, Kiwi, and Cassowary are also ratites).
The Emu and the Greater Rhea have a large, soft, grey-brown feathered body, a long featherless neck, and long featherless legs with three toes.
The Emu has orange-brown eyes, whereas the Greater Rhea has blue to brown eyes.
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The Phantasmal Poison Frog (Epipedobates tricolor) is an endangered amphibian. It is a Poison Dart Frog.
The Phantasmal Poison Frog has smooth, dark-red to red-brown skin with three yellow-white side stripes from its head to its tail. It has white spots on its hind (back) legs. It has large dark eyes. It has webbed feet with one digit (toe) longer than the others.
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What is a toe tuft?
A tuft is a bunch of hair or fur – usually at the end of the tail of some animals.
Toe tufts are bunches of hair between the toes of some animals. The fur usually sticks out for 1-2 centimetres beyond the paw pad.
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The Northern Caiman Lizard (Dracaena guianensis) is a semi-aquatic freshwater reptile. It is also known as the Guyana Caiman Lizard. It is related to the Tegu.
The Northern Caiman Lizard has a heavy bright green body with short legs. It has dark bands on its body. Its head is large and usually red or orange. Its jaws are muscular and powerful. It has a long tail. It has a clear third eyelid, which is like a pair of goggles when it swims underwater. It has five toes, and its fourth toe is longer than its other toes.
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The Linne’s Two-Toed Sloth (Choloepus didactylus) is a mammal. It is also known as the Southern Two-Toed Sloth or the Linnaeus’s Two-Toed Sloth. It is related to the Anteater. There are three-toed sloths (three toes on their front feet) and two-toed sloths (two toes on their front feet).
The Linne’s Two-Toed Sloth has light-brown fur, long limbs, and a protruding nose with large nostrils. It has patches of chestnut-coloured fur on its limbs (arms and legs) and crown. It has brown eyes. It has two toes on its front feet and three toes on its back feet. The toes are actually long curved claws. It does not have many teeth – it has four or five sets of teeth, including canine teeth. It does not have incisor teeth. It has a stubby tail.
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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.
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The Emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) is a large flightless Australian bird. It is a ratite. Ratites include the ostrich, kiwi, and cassowary.
The Emu has a large soft, shaggy, grey-brown-feathered body, a long almost featherless pale-blue neck, and long featherless legs with three-toed feet that have sharp claws and thick, cushioned pads. Its brown feathers have black tips. It has a soft short grey beak and grey legs. It has orange-brown eyes.
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How do lizards walk upside down?
Many lizards, such as geckos and skinks, can walk upside down and climb up walls. They have special toe pads that can support their weight.
Their toe pads have microscopic hairs or bristles, called setae, that act like Velcro, enabling their feet to stick to surfaces.
On each of the setae are millions of even smaller tips, called septulae. Each one can grip the surface.
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The Black Crowned Crane (Balearica pavonina ceciliae) is a rare bird native to the wetlands of eastern and western Africa. It is a subspecies of the Grey Crowned Crane (Balearica regulorum).
The Black Crowned Crane has a black neck, and a white and pink naked (featherless) head. Its wings are mainly white. Its head has a crown of stiff golden feathers. Its cheeks are pinkish-white, and it has a pink throat pouch. Its beak is short and grey, and its legs are black.
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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.
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The Western Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio) – also written as Swamp Hen – is a wetlands bird native to the Iberian Peninsula, France, Sardinia, and northwest Africa. It belongs to the Rail family. It is related to rails, moorhens and coots.
The Western Swamphen has iridescent green and blue body feathers, with a paler blue face. It has a red frontal shield above its thick red beak. Its feet are pink-red with four long toes. Its toes are not webbed. Its eyes are orange-brown.
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The Australasian Swamphen (Porphyrio melanotus) – also written as Swamp Hen – is a wetlands bird native to Australia and southeast Asia. It belongs to the Rail family. It is related to rails, moorhens and coots.
The Australasian Swamphen is black with a purple throat and chest. It has a red frontal shield above its thick red beak. Its feet are pink-red with four long toes. Its toes are not webbed. Its eyes are orange-brown.
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The Tasmanian Devil (Sarcophilus harrisii) is a marsupial mammal from Tasmania, Australia. It is a dasyurid.
The Tasmanian Devil has black fur with irregular white patches on its chest and rump. It has a muscular build with a large head, thick neck, and a medium-sized thick tail. Similar to a hyena, its front legs are slightly longer than its back legs. It has five long toes on its front feet and four toes on its back feet, with long non-retractable claws. It has long whiskers on its face.
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The Black Crake (Amaurornis flavirostra) is a waterbird from sub-Saharan Africa.
The Black Crake is a medium-sized bird with black feathers, with an olive-brown tone on its wings. It has a striking yellow beak, red eyes, red legs, and red feet with long toes. It has a short tail.
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The Long-Toed Plover (Vanellus charadrius crassirostris) is also called the Long-Toed Lapwing. It is found in eastern and southern Africa.
It is a long-necked marsh plover with a white face and throat, black neck and chest, and grey-brown wings and upperparts. Its beak is pink with a dark tip. Its eyes are cherry-red with a black pupil. Its legs and feet are pinkish-red with three long front toes.
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The Diederik Cuckoo (Chrysococcyx caprius) was formerly the Didric Cuckoo. It lives in sub-Saharan Africa.
The Diederik Cuckoo is a small cuckoo with shiny green feathers on top and shiny copper feathers on the back, with a white underbelly. Its wings are black with white patches. It has a broken white eye-stripe with a red eye-ring. Young Diederick Cuckoos have a red beak.
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The Crested Crane (Balearica regulorum gibbericeps) is a bird native to the wetlands of eastern and southern Africa. It is a subspecies of the Grey Crowned Crane (Balearica regulorum).
Its body feathers are mainly grey, but its wings are mainly white with russet-brown feathers. Its head has a crown of stiff golden feathers. The sides of its face are white, and there is a bright red throat pouch. Its beak (bill) is short and grey, and its legs are black.
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What is a passerine?
Many birds are passerines.
A passerine is a perching bird; a bird that perches on branches, wire, and all sorts of things.
A perching bird has four toes. Three toes point forward and one toe points backward.
A passerine is also a songbird – a bird that sings.
Photographer: Martina Nicolls
Martina Nicolls: SIMILAR BUT DIFFERENT IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM
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How many toes has a crocodile?
The crocodile has five toes on its front feet. There is no webbing between the toes.
The crocodile has four toes on its back feet. There is webbing between the toes.
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Tortoises and turtles – which one has legs and which one has flippers?
The tortoise has short, thick legs with claws for walking on land.
The sea turtle has flippers for swimming in the sea.
The terrapin has webbed feet with claws for walking on land and swimming in water.
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