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We are a group of animal enthusiasts and we hope that reader will gain an increased appreciation of the need for more conservation measures in order to protect the beautiful creatures that inhabit this planet. Our philosophy is that the more we learn about animals, the more we respect them and take better care of them. That is why we update this blog with new animals, We encourage you to syndicate our content by adding "animal of the day" to your own blog! (read more)

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Tuesday 19 May 2015 Chinchilla - Magnificent Fur Blessing and Curse

ChinchillaIn the unforgiving, wind-swept Andes Mountains of South America, a fur coat so thick that it repels water is a blessing. Long-tailed chinchillas (Chinchilla lanigera) are blessed with such a plush coat. But that same coat is the cause of their critically endangered status in the wild. They have been hunted so ruthlessly for their fur that they are nearly extinct in the wild. Fortunately, they survive well in captivity and make excellent pets.

General Appearance

Long-tailed chinchillas, also called Chilean chinchillas or “chins” by pet owners, are rodents more closely related to guinea pigs than to mice. Their foot long (30.48 cm) bodies are very round with comparatively tiny feet and a long, silky tail an additional 5 to 6 inches (12.7 to 15.2 cm) long. Their heads are more rabbit-like than guinea pig-like with pleasantly prominent ears that are rounded at the tips. Despite their chubby appearance, the largest chins only weigh 2 pounds (0.91 kg.)

Wild chinchillas sport the same color of fur – a silver grey with pale bellies. But domesticated chinchillas come in a variety of colors, including albino, white (with dark eyes) beige, shades of black and a brown-grey shade called lavender. Chinchillas must bathe in dust because the coat takes such a long time to dry that the animal could catch pneumonia. In the Andes Mountains, rain is rare and so the animals evolved to not rely on it.

Behavior

In the wild, chinchillas live in small colonies and eat grass, lichens, seeds and occasionally dead insects. Like any other rodent, chinchilla’s front teeth grow continuously throughout their lives in order to accommodate for their hard diet. In captivity, chinchillas need to eat hard foods and be given chew toys so their teeth do not grow too long.

After a gestation of around 112 days, chinchilla babies are born fully furred with their eyes open and their teeth grown in. They can soon walk after birth and follow after their parents. Both parents help in their care, but the mother winds up doing most of the work. Babies are weaned when they are two months old. They become sexually mature by the time they are eight months old. Living in small colonies means that there are many eyes working together to look out for predators. The chinchilla’s main form of defense is their speed. Despite their comical appearances, chinchillas can sprint in amazingly quick bursts of speed. They rarely run in a straight line but zig-zag and leap to out-maneuver natural predators such as birds of prey.

The Chinchilla Today

Long-tailed chinchillas are one of the rarest mammals to be found in the Andean mountains. Hunting them became outlawed by 1918, although poaching does occur. In the early 1900s, 12 chinchillas, nine males and three females, were brought to the United States by an ex-miner named Matthias F. Chapman. All pet chinchillas in North America are descended from 11 of these 12. One chinchilla turned out to be too old to breed. There are chinchilla farms in many countries of the world where these gentle, friendly animals are killed for their pelts.

Chinchillas are remarkably long-lived for rodents. Those in captivity have lived as long as 20 years, although the world record holder lived a whopping 26 years. In the wild, their lifespans are considerably shorter but animals living to 15 have been recorded. You can help spreading the word about this animal by liking it on facebook

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Friday 03 April 2015 Hare - Easter bunny was a hare originally

hare The tradition of the Easter bunny originates from West-european cultures, where it is a hare (Lepus europaeus) rather than a rabbit... German protestants had an abundance of eggs because of fasting. "German Protestants wanted to retain the Catholic custom of eating colored eggs for Easter, but did not want to introduce their children to the Catholic rite of fasting. Eggs were forbidden to Catholics during the fast of Lent, which was the reason for the abundance of eggs at Easter time." (source)

The Easter bunny / hare would leave eggs for good children. The egg and its symbolism comes from the Romans: "The Romans believed that all life proceeded from an egg, so the egg came to symbolize birth and rebirth. Christians regarded eggs as the seeds of life and attributed them with the symbol of Jesus' resurrection." (source)

Hares can run up to 70 kilometers per hour. Around spring, hares change their behavior and can be seen fighting each other, this can be either intermale competition or a female testing a male or rejecting him. Unlike the young of rabbits, the young of hares are born with fur and eyes open and are able to defend themselves quickly

Photo by de:User:Fmickan, licensed under GFDL You can help spreading the word about this animal by liking it on facebook

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Thursday 05 March 2015 Pacific White-sided Dolphin - Acrobat of the Pacific

Pacific white-sided dolphinThe Pacific white-sided dolphin or “lag” (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens) is a familiar sight to boaters from California to Korea. They regularly leap out of the water and ride the slipstream of boats. Sometimes they leap high and then flop on the water on their sides, as if purposefully making the largest possible splash that they can. Their intense curiosity about boats makes it difficult for scientists to get an accurate number about how many are left in the wild. Pacific white-sided dolphins tend to and from the same boat. Keeping track of which individual dolphin has already investigated a boat is difficult, since the dolphins look alike.

Most Pacific white-sided dolphins migrate to colder Artic waters off of Russia, Canada and Alaska in the summer and then heads to tropical waters such as Japan or Korea for the winter. But some pods or family groups stay in one area year-round, off the coast of Baja, California and do not seem to mind the winter migrants. There may also be a permanent population in Japan. These Japanese dolphins are much lighter in color than the migrants.

General Appearance


Pacific white-sided dolphins are considered small, averaging a mere 7 to 8 feet (2.1 to 2.4 meters) long and weighing in around 300 pounds (150 kg.) Newborn calves average 31 to 37 inches (80 to 95 cm.) They have a much shorter and more bulbous head than the more familiar bottlenose dolphin.

They are spectacularly colored with swirls of black, dark grey and silvery grey. Darker swirls are on the back, around the eyes and on the tip of the beak or nose. The dorsal fin is mostly pale grey but edged in a sharply contrasting black or charcoal-grey. Dolphins often rest at the surface of the water where some of their back may be seen. The Pacific white-sided dolphin has a bright horizontal stripe on both sides of its dark body. The belly and underside of the tail and flippers are white.

Behavior

Pacific white-sided dolphins seem to delight in each other’s company. Pods of 100 animals are more have been reported, even in the twenty-first century. They also seem curious about other species of dolphins and are friendly with the northern right-whale dolphin (Lagenorhynchus borealis.) Small groups of friends of family members may split off to hunt, but these small groups soon reassemble into huge pods.

All dolphins are carnivorous. They have rarely been observed feeding, leading some scientists to believe they feed at night and spend the daylight hours socializing, playing and snoozing. They eat squid, salmon, herring, sardines, hake, cod and shrimp. They are thought to be prey for large sharks and killer whales but their main predators are humans. Although many countries ban whaling, Pacific white-sided dolphins are killed by the thousands by both Japanese fisherman and accidentally in nets intended for other species such as cod and squid.

Future Speculation

With luck, wild Pacific white-sided dolphins can live up to 46. This species has done well in captivity, but needs a huge aquarium in order to remain healthy. Just how many remain in the wild is unknown, although they are currently not listed as an endangered species. However, dolphin meat keeps appearing in black markets, especially in Asia where it is considered a delicacy.

But water pollution is an even bigger threat to the Pacific white-sided dolphin than fisherman. Tests done on beached dolphins on California showed that their bodies contained abnormally high levels of the pesticide DDT and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) used in coolants for machines. You can help spreading the word about this animal by liking it on facebook

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Two Talking Cats - and What They Are Saying

Cats talkingVery adorable video of two talking cats, they really seem to have a conversation. After you have watched it, watch also the next video, where you hear what they say in English, very funny...





Cats talking EnglishIn this video, you hear what they were saying in English, good video.

In: Funny pictures and video's of animals
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Ninja cat

Ninja cat This video has more than 11 million views, i cannot believe it.

This cat has mastered the old ninja skill of moving without moving...

In: Funny pictures and video's of animals
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Dog escaping from prison

Prison break dog Amazing footage of a dog escaping from its prison. Michael Scofield eat your heart out! Very clever, at the beginning of the video you wouldn't figure out how the dog would escape, right?

In: Funny pictures and video's of animals
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Wolfish pair

Wolfish pairImagine relaxing in the sea, together, resting in the coral, would you see this picture in your mind? Click the picture of this wolfish pair to watch the video.

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Funniest animal videos

Funny animals This is one of the funniest animal videos featuring funny cats and dog videos, Tyson the skateboarding dog, penguins and even a polar bear. I really like the funny cats in the beginning, I am curious what you think? Half of the clip is of Tyson the skateboarding dog, so if you get tired of him, you can stop watching... Have fun!

In: Funny pictures and video's of animals
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Monkey pulls dog tail

Monkey pulls dog tailThis is a funny video about a monkey pulling the tail of a dog. The dog doesn't know what hit him!

Click here to view the video

In: Funny pictures and video's of animals
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Lion hugs rescuer

Lion hugs rescuerAbsolutely amazing story and movieclip about a lion that was rescued. Seems the king of the jungle has a softer side after all! Click here to view the movie where the lion hugs his rescuer

In: Funny pictures and video's of animals
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