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Thread: The Creepy, Bizarre, Fascinating, Unusual, And Occasionally Cute Critter Thread!

  1. #1
    flayed on the marble stairs
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    The Creepy, Bizarre, Fascinating, Unusual, And Occasionally Cute Critter Thread!

    To be honest, this is one of the threads that I've been missing the most from back in the old days. I figured I'd try and post this thread in hopes of getting this topic rolling again. I really enjoyed looking at and learning about all these fascinating creatures... except the spiders, but even then the suspense of clicking the spoiler button was always exhilarating.

    To begin, I bring you Jellyfish Lake!



    Above is Jellyfish Lake, located on one of the uninhabited rock islands in Palau. The lake was cut off from the ocean around 12,000 years ago; consequently, the jellyfish trapped in the lake evolved so that they lost their sting abilities. Now completely harmless, tourists can swim amongst them and come out of the water unscathed!

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    WHAT!!

    (are you sure this isn't SCIENCE TM?)
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    Administrator Ryan's Avatar
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    I miss this thread, too! I started the original one. I'll have to keep my eye out for interesting stuff when I'm browsing the net.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pupate View Post
    Above is Jellyfish Lake, located on one of the uninhabited rock islands in Palau. The lake was cut off from the ocean around 12,000 years ago; consequently, the jellyfish trapped in the lake evolved so that they lost their sting abilities. Now completely harmless, tourists can swim amongst them and come out of the water unscathed!
    Wow! That is really cool!

  5. #5
    Why is this happening to me? beanstew's Avatar
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    Cool thread. I love unusual animals.

    The ghost slug, Selenochlamys ysbryda, is a species of predatory air-breathing land slug. It is a shell-less pulmonate gastropod mollusc in the family Trigonochlamydidae.

    The species was discovered in 2006 in Glamorgan, Wales and was formally described and named in 2008 by Ben Rowson, a research assistant and PhD candidate at the National Museum Wales (Amgueddfa Cymru), and Bill Symondson, an ecologist at Cardiff University.

    This slug can reach 2.5 inches (6.4 cm) in size, with its body extended. It has no eyes, and is white in colour. It is nocturnal, and unlike the majority of slugs, it is a carnivore, feeding on earthworms at night using its blade-like teeth. The species was unknown to science prior to 2006.
    Ghost Slug

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    CMYK>RGB Stephanie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pupate View Post



    Above is Jellyfish Lake, located on one of the uninhabited rock islands in Palau. The lake was cut off from the ocean around 12,000 years ago; consequently, the jellyfish trapped in the lake evolved so that they lost their sting abilities. Now completely harmless, tourists can swim amongst them and come out of the water unscathed!

    Didn't they go there for Survivor one year, and one of the rewards was swimming in that lake? I seem to recall this and being fascinated at the time. Nature is grand!

  7. #7
    Why is this happening to me? beanstew's Avatar
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    Pink Fairy Armadillo

    The Pink Fairy Armadillo is approximately 90-115 mm (3.5-4.5 inches) long excluding the tail, and is pale rose or pink in color. It has the ability to bury itself completely in a matter of seconds if frightened.

    It is a nocturnal animal. It burrows small holes near ant colonies in dry dirt, and feeds mainly on ants and ant larvae near its burrow. Occasionally it feeds on worms, snails, insects and larvae, or various plant and root material.

    The Pink Fairy Armadillo spends much of its time under the ground as it is a "sand swimmer" similar to the Golden Mole or the Marsupial Mole. They use large front claws to agitate the sand, allowing them to almost swim through the ground like it is water. It is torpedo-shaped and has a shielded head to prevent abrasion from the sand.
    Maybe for once, someone will call me "Sir" without adding, "You're making a scene."

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    Senior Member toriwannabe's Avatar
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    ^ is that real? Looks like a gerbil went to a costume party and couldn't decide whether to be an armadillo or a crocodile.

  9. #9
    streak his blood across my beak PoorMatty's Avatar
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    This was one of my favorite threads at the old place, and I'm sad to see it is so rarely posted in. In my crippling Thursday night boredom and as an attempt to get things going again . . .

    LET'S ALL LEARN SOMETHING NEW ABOUT OWLS!



    Owls are creepy, bizarre, fascinating, unusual, and yes, occasionally cute critters. Here are some things you may not know about owls.

    Owls are made pound for pound to do two things: go undetected and efficiently kill things. Their plumage is cryptically patterned to blend in with tree bark, and they frequently sit directly up against the trunk of a tree. Many have ear tufts which are used to help the owl look like the broken off stump of a tree branch. Owls have the ability to either puff up to appear much larger than they actually are, or to draw all their feathers in to make themselves look narrow and even more branchlike. Watch as this Scops-Owl reacts to a little Barn Owl and then to a much larger Eagle Owl:



    Their ears are located on either side of their head, one slightly higher than the other, and with one pointing down and one pointing up. These, combined with the big round discs of feathers that surround their eyes, help them to pinpoint the sound of their prey. An owl at the top of a very tall tree can hear a mouse moving underneath two feet of snow.

    The Barn Owl is considered by many to have the best hearing of any animal in the world. It is also considered by many to be the most terrifying bird to ever walk the earth.



    The eyes of the Barn Owl (and other owls) are fixed in its head. They can't roll around in the head, so instead the owl bobs its head to hone in very exactly on whatever it is listening to. This is also why an owl is able to rotate its head nearly 270 degrees. Unlike hawks, most owls are not made for long-distance or agile flight and hunt instead by sitting on an exposed perch at the edge of a forest and waiting for something to come along which it then zeros in on and pounces on, often killing it on impact with its powerful talons. The Great Horned Owl, for example, has ten times the strength of a human hand in each of its feet, something like 500 lbs per square inch.

    The Barn Owl doesn't sit and wait, though. It is a very acrobatic flyer and actively hunts throughout the night over open fields, coursing back and forth over the tall grass. The wing feathers of the Barn Owl (and all owls) are fringed along the leading edge, allowing the air to pass through in such a way that each wingbeat is completely silent. This not only keeps the prey from hearing the owl approaching, but also keeps the sound of flapping wings from interfering with the signals the prey is sending the owl's sensitive ears. When it hears something, it can pause and hover in midair, bobbing and weaving its head until it is focused directly on the prey. Once it has locked into the signal of the prey, it won't move its head again until it has caught it. It drops out of the air, brings its feet directly into its line of vision and grasps the victim. The feet of an owl have two toes pointing forward and two pointing backward, making them just right for grabbing onto the cylindrical body of a rodent. A Barn Owl can catch and eat up to a dozen mice per night.



    The largest owl in the world is the Eurasian Eagle Owl, which can be nearly 30" long:



    The smallest owl in the world is the Elf Owl, only around 5 inches long, the size of a sparrow:



    The largest owl in the U.S. is the very beautiful Great Gray Owl, around 27 inches long:



    Also an interesting little guy is the Burrowing Owl, which is also very small and lives in colonies in underground burrows, often living side-by-side with prairie dog colonies:



    And finally, a terrible photo of me, roused from slumber at 4 a.m. to meet this adorable little Northern Saw-whet Owl right after he was banded:



    In summation, owls are badass in every kind of way. May you all one day love them as much as I do.


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    Senior Member Amie's Avatar
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    Bravo, Matty! And Evil Owl....woah!

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    Senior Member Cairn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PoorMatty View Post
    In summation, owls are badass in every kind of way. May you all one day love them as much as I do.
    I do! I do!

    Where are you and the Northern Saw-whet? Is it a sanctuary? Do you partake in the banding?

  12. #12
    streak his blood across my beak PoorMatty's Avatar
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    I'm friends with a master bander here in AL who called me to come see the owl as I'd never seen one before. The Saw-whet Owl is known to winter much further north than this, but was never thought to come this far south, at least not in large numbers. My friend saw one once in his yard and thought he'd start a banding operation just to see, and now he bands over a dozen each winter in his own backyard, which shows that they're much more numerous here than anyone ever thought.

    It was the sweetest little owl. Didn't try to claw me or bite me or scratch me (and his feet were pretty nasty looking--claw's much bigger than a cat's). After he'd been measured, banded, and documented, we set him in a tree and he didn't even fly away. Just sat there and watched us go.

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    it's a long long climb Kari's Avatar
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    zomg.

    I saw a Barn Owl at Animal Kingdom in Disney! they have a really awesome bird show. I totally thought of you!

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    As a general rule, I severely dislike birds. I love bird song in the morning but that's when I'm safely behind a window where they can't peck out my eyes and poop in the bleeding remains. *shudders* They poop on your car, the dive bomb your head and behind those beady little eyes is a brain that wants to peck and claw at your face! And I seriously do not feel safe in a home with a parrot.

    HOWEVER, that being said, I think Owls are among the most gorgeous and amazing creatures on the planet. It is a bizarre love that I have for them. I have quite a few owl figurines around, from realistic to cute to artistic. For as long as I can remember, I've wanted the mechanical owl from "Clash of the Titans". And Archimedes the Owl is my all time favourite cartoon character.

  15. #15
    i owls too and I'm totally on board with you owen about birds. it took me like 3 years to be comfortable in my apartment after i moved here because of my husband's grey. the only reason i liked him was he was pretty much happy to be left alone *L*

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