Page 9 - Animal Facts

The first animal to ever become 'un-extinct' was a Pyrenean Ibex. Unfortunately it was extinct again within 7 minutes!

When a species used to become extinct, there was not much that could be done about it except put its picture and maybe some of its bones or fossils in a museum.

When the Pyrenean Ibex, a species of wild goat, became extinct in 2000, scientists decided to try and ‘de-extinct’ it.

They had some DNA from one of the last females named Celia, and they decided to attempt to clone the animal.

In January 2009, the cloned female Pyrenean Ibex was born alive and the Pyrenean ibex became the first taxon ever to become ‘un-extinct’ for a very short time. The little Ibex survived for only seven minutes before she died from lung defects. It had a extra lobe in the left lung and the lungs collapsed.

Scientists believe this happened because the DNA for the clone was taken from an aged individual. Celia was already 13 years old.

Aged DNA usually cause problems for clones and leads to a shorter lifespan. Even if the cloned Ibex survived, it would not have lived very long.


The Turkey Vulture’s primary defense is to vomit on its predators!

Typically found throughout the Americas, the Turkey Vulture is the most widespread of all New World vultures. Although it is generally at the top of the food chain, it does have some threats such as golden eagles, bald eagles, and great horned owls. 

However, the threat to the vulture is often not directly to the bird itself but rather to its eggs. The Turkey Vulture, when threatened, has one primary defense mechanism. It will regurgitate semi-digested meat, which smells absolutely rancid and will deter most any animal.

If the smell doesn’t drive predators away, the vomit will actually sting if it comes in contact with another animals face or eyes. While this is incredibly useful when dealing with threats, the Turkey Vulture will actually quickly vomit if it needs a quick take off and hasn’t digested its food! If only human vomit was as useful! 


Spider legs use hydraulic pressure. When they die their legs curl because the liquid dries up!

Spiders' legs curl up is because a spider uses hydraulic pressure to push liquid into it's legs that allow it to move, and when it dies the liquid drains out making the legs curl up

If you've ever killed a spider (without completely squishing it) or come across one that is already dead, you know that their legs curl up beneath them when they die. You may be too busy being grossed out by this eight-legged creature to wonder just why this is. Human's limbs don't curl inward after they die. So what is going on with this posthumous tendency.

It turns out that spiders' legs are hydraulic. Or more specifically, two of the six joints in their legs are hydraulic. In order to straighten these joints and subsequently their legs, spiders flex their muscles and increase the pressure. When the spider dies, it obviously loses control over it's leg system and relaxes. The legs then curl upward automatically because no pressure is keeping them straightened.


Some awesome lists!

Prong-horned antelope can probably see the rings around Saturn on a clear night!

In 1850 there were 60 million antelope in North America, but they were nearly wiped out along with the Buffalo. There are about a million left today.

Scientists studying prong-horned antelope still know very little about these animals.

What IS known is that the rate they metabolize oxygen at is three and a half times higher than even the most fit human runner.

The pronghorns are the best endurance athletes in the world, according to Stan Lindstedt, a biologist from Arizona. They can maintain a speed of 40 miles an hour for more than an hour!

What is probably the most amazing known fact about these antelope is that they have 10X vision. This means that, on a clear night, these mammals can probably see the rings of Saturn!

Their hearts and lungs are three times bigger than that of other mammals of the same weight. They also have twice as much blood circulating through their bodies, and these animals have no body fat whatsoever.

The only humans believed to have ever managed to exhaust these deer through tracking and ‘chasing’ them were the Tarahumara Indians who would persist until “the creature falls from exhaustion."

This was, however, never witnessed by the person who wrote this account in 1935.


This cute-looking animal can live without drinking any water!

The Sand Cat can live without drinking water and feeds on venomous snakes. It’s safe to say that the Sand Cat the Chuck Norris of the animal world, even if it looks like your run of the mill, internet kitty. Like its name suggest, it’s usually found in desert areas in the arid countries of Northern America, Arabia, and some parts of Central Asia and Pakistan. 

It has distinctive, large ears; all the better to hear you with, in the vast expanses of sandy terrain through which sound doesn’t travel very well. The Sand Cat has mastered the art of adapting its environment; it can literally live without drinking water. Instead, it gets all the fluid it requires from its prey like its cousin the Black-footed Cat (another cute but deadly creature). 

The Sand Cat doesn’t discriminate when it comes to its prey. It eats rodents, insects, birds of all sizes, venomous snakes; if the desert has it, then the Sand Cat eats it. Another reason not to get lost in the desert. 



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