Amazing Animal Facts Every Kid Will Want to Know
We all know how diverse the animal kingdom is, but some of the things these animals can (and can’t) do are just jaw-dropping.
So, whether you’re trying to impress your little one or trying to provide a much need distraction at dinner, these amazing animal facts are sure to shock and awe everyone — kids included.
Talk about a good night’s rest. Like many animals that hibernate when the weather gets too cold, a snail will just go inside its shell and become dormant until it feels it’s safe to come out again.
And since they need moisture to survive, snails will secrete a layer of mucous to cover themselves in before they go away for the long sleep.
An Easy Swap
All those colorful little Nemos you see at the aquarium started out as males. Clownfish are born male but with both male and female reproductive organs inside. So, then how do they reproduce and make clownfish babies? The males can transform into females when mating is required!
When the alpha female of a clownfish community dies, one of the males steps it up (so to speak) and turns into a female so that mating can continue. And once they swap genders, there’s no switching back. Crazy, right?
A Nightly Necessity
If this isn’t the cutest thing we’ve ever heard, we don’t know what is.
Since these adorable mammals sleep floating on their back in the water, they all link hands to avoid floating away from each other while snoozing. Awwwww.
A Matter of Bones
It sounds illogical, but it’s true. Despite having a significantly longer neck than humans, giraffes and humans both have seven neck vertebrae.
The difference is the giraffe’s vertebrae can be more than 10-inches long. In fact, a giraffe’s 6-foot neck, along with its head, can weigh up to 600 pounds!
A Mother’s Love
There are no diapers in the animal kingdom. That cute little baby kangaroo (known as a joey) you see all cuddled into mommy’s pouch is also going to the bathroom in there.
The mother kangaroo cleans it out (and cleans her baby) by using her paws and tongue — yikes! It’s just more proof that a mother will do anything for her children.
Talk About an Eternity
If you thought nine months felt like an eternity, imagine two full years of carrying a baby inside you. Because baby elephants grow inside their mother’s wombs for so long, their brains are highly developed by the time they make it earth side.
This makes sense since elephants are the biggest-brained land animal in the world. And that big brain comes in handy during those early months, giving them abilities such as figuring out how to feed themselves with their trunk.
A Nocturnal Creature
There’s apparently no such thing as “shut-eye” for frogs since they never actually close their eyes when they snooze — or at any other time for that matter.
They also have a clear, third eyelid that they can close to protect their eyes while swimming underwater.
Aren’t You Hungry?
Unlike humans, tarantulas have a crazy slow metabolism and have become adept at conserving their energy when they need to.
That said, a baby tarantula can’t go as long as an adult tarantula without food, and female tarantulas can go much longer than males without eating. Sounds about right to us.
Sun Damage at Its Worst
In case you didn’t know, jellyfish consist of 94 to 98 percent water, so when they're exposed to the sun, water does what it does — and poof!
Within a couple hours, they’re gone.
An Interesting Shape
Due to a crazy long digestive process — 14 to 16 days — wombat poop comes out super compacted and dice-shaped. Think tiny brown ice cubes.
Wombats often leave their unusually shaped excrement on top of rocks and logs to mark their territory. Their unique shape helps the scat to stay on top of these objects and not roll off. Wombats typically expel 80 to 100 of these cubes a day. Now, that’s a signature calling card!
A Visual Disconnect
A 1987 study found that common tree squirrels couldn’t tell the difference between green and red leaves. They can tell red and green apart from other colors but not from each other.
So, don’t expect your neighborhood squirrel to enjoy the changing colors of the leaves during autumn.
Not Much Bounce
The reason elephants can’t jump is simple: They have no reason to. Most animals jump to get away from predators, but thanks to their enormous size, elephants have other means to stave off the bad guys.
The biological reason is that all of the bones in their giant legs point downward, which means they literally don’t have the bounce needed to even propel themselves off the ground.
A Gag Reflux
It was once thought that frogs couldn’t vomit, but it turns out they can. It’s just that they yak out their actual stomach, so it’s dangling from their mouths.
Then, they proceed to use their forearms to scrape out everything inside before swallowing it back in again. Yes, it’s as gross as it sounds.