Animals of the world, Clam

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skjell clam (640x461)

  • True clams, in the strict sense, are bivalves with equal shells closed by two adductor muscles, and with a powerful, muscular, foot that they use to burrow themselves in the mud
  • The word is often applied only to those that are edible, spending most of their lives partially buried in the sand of the ocean floor
  • Clams live in both salt water and fresh water.
  • Clam needs to open their valves if they move about, and also to allow their two feeding tubes (siphons) to reach out into the water. Bivalves feed by filter microscopic algae out of the water they live in.
  • Clams can be found in a variety of sizes ranging from 0.004 of an inch to almost 4 feet as seen in the giant clam
  • Some clams have life cycles of only one year, while at least one may be over 500 years old
  • Clams age can be calculated by counting rings on its shell. The growth-increments themselves provide a record of how the animal has varied in its growth-rate from year to year, and that varies according to climate, seawater temperature, and food supply.

Animals of the world, Day Gecko

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Day Gecko (640x618)

  • Geckos are mostly small, usually nocturnal reptiles with a soft skin
  • Day geckos inhabit the islands of the south-west part of the Indian Ocean
  • Many species have bright green, red, and blue colours, these brilliant colours play a role in intraspecies recognition and also serve as camouflage
  • The length of the different Phelsuma species varies between about 6.5 and 30 centimetres (2.6 and 11.8 in)
  • Day geckos feed on various insects and other invertebrates in the wild. They also eat nectar, pollen, and occasionally soft, ripe and sweet fruits such as bananas.
  • In contrast to most other gecko species, day geckos are active mainly during the day
  • The tails of geckos may be long and tapering, short and blunt, or even globular. The tail serves in many species as an energy storehouse on which the animal can draw during unfavourable conditions.
  • They can instantly shed their tail if they are caught by a predator, and then grow a new one
  • Most geckos make noises such as chirping, barking, and clicking when they are defending their territory or attracting a mate.

Animals of the world, Badger

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grevling (640x463)

  • A medium-sized, heavily furred mammal. Thick neck, broad shoulders with short powerful legs, sharp teeth, and claws.
  • They are found living in the forests of Europe and western Asia
  • The most commonly known badgers are the white and black striped badgers in western Europe. They have black faces with distinctive white markings, grey bodies with a light-coloured stripe from head to tail, and dark legs with light-coloured underbellies. They grow to around 90 cm (35 in) in length including tail.
  • The behaviour of badgers differs by family, but all shelter underground, living in burrows called setts, which may be very extensive.
  • Badgers prefer dry, open grasslands, though they are very adaptable. Some also live in the woods, quarries, hedgerows, sea cliffs, and moorland.
  • These highly social animals have distinct social groups, typically of four to six adults
  • Badgers can run at 25–30 km/h (16–19 mph) for short periods of time.
  • The diet of the badger consists largely of earthworms, insects, grubs, and the eggs and young of ground-nesting birds. They also eat small mammals, amphibians and reptiles, as well as roots and fruit
  • Badgers normally may live for 10 to 12 years.

Animals of the world, Leopard

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Leopard (640x455)

  • They live in sub-Saharan Africa, northeast Africa, Central Asia, India, and China
  • These large cats can live in almost any type of habitat, including rainforests, deserts, woodlands, grassland savannas, forests, mountain habitats, coastal scrub, shrub lands, and swampy areas
  • The average size is 50 to 90 kg (110 to 200 pounds) in weight, and 60 to 70 cm in shoulder height.
  • Leopards have a light tan base coloured coat with a black rosette pattern and a lighter coloured underside
  • Leopards usually rest during the heat of the day in bushes, rocks, caves, or even up in a tree, depending upon their habitat
  • Leopards are carnivores and eat any meat item they can find: monkeys, baboons, rodents, snakes, amphibians, large birds, fish, antelope, cheetah cubs, warthogs, and porcupines.
  • They have amazingly strong necks and shoulders, and are able to carry prey often heavier than themselves, high up into the branches of trees
  • It can run at speeds of up to 58 kilometres per hour (36 mph)
  • They produce a number of vocalisations, including growls, snarls, meows and purrs
  • The average typical life span of a leopard is between 12 and 17 years.

Animals of the world, Fennec Fox

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Fennec Fox (640x451)

  • The Fennec Fox or Fennec is a small nocturnal fox found in the Sahara of North Africa.
  • The Fennec is characterized by its small size (head and body length 36–41 cm [14–16 inches], weight about 1.5 kg [3.3 pounds]) and large ears,  which also serve to dissipate heat.
  • The ears of a Fennec are sensitive enough to hear prey that may be underground
  • Their thick fur is pale brown to almost white in colour enabling them to camouflage easily in their desert environment.
  • Fennecs are highly specialized for life in the deserts being found almost exclusively in arid, sandy regions.
  • Fennec foxes live in underground dens for habitation and protection
  • Fennec foxes make a variety of sounds, including barking, a purring sound similar to that of a domestic cat, and a snarl if threatened
  • The Fennec fox hunts rodents, insects, birds, and browses desert grasses and fruits
  • Fennec foxes are highly social animals, living together in family groups that may number up to 10 individuals