From fanged deer to dogs that look more like raccoons, here are a few bizarre and beautiful creatures that most of us are unfamiliar with…
This small species of deer is found in central China, and known for the tuft of dark hair on their foreheads. Funny, one would think they might be known for their huge Dracula fangs.
Pink Fairy Armadillo
With its shielded head and torso, this 4-inch nocturnal pink armadillo uses those crazy claws to basically swim through sand just below the surface.
Like a small cougar, the fossa is the largest carnivorous mammal on the island of Madagascar. Their retractable claws allow them to climb up trees and just as easily run back down them head-first.
This long-necked species of antelope, also called the Waller’s Gazelle, is found in East Africa. Their long legs and necks enable them to reach higher branches for food. They also make them incredibly (and awkwardly) cute.
Naked Mole Rat
For as ugly as they seem, the Naked Mole Rat is pretty incredible. They live up to 28 years, which is unparalleled among other similar animals, and maintain their fertility for almost the entire time. They are often used in cancer research and in aging studies, since they are born looking like this and barely age at all. All those cool things might make up for the fact that this guy is not the prettiest creature on the planet.
Only found in the Bay of Bengal and Southeast Asia, this dolphin is closely related to the killer whale. It’s also much, much cuter.
This endangered wild goat is found in northeastern Afghanistan and Pakistan, and is Pakistan’s national animal. When they chew their cud, foam falls from their mouths and dries on the ground, which locals seek out and harvest for anti-venom purposes. Plus, his long beard makes this guy look super old and wise.
These crazy crustaceans hang out by the cracks in the sea floor where heated, mineral-rich water flows. They’re also known as Kiwaidae. I assume that means “hairy crab” or something…
The snub-nosed monkey lives in Asia in large groups of up to 600 members. They are known for their impressive vocal repertoire, calling out solo or in choral fashion. They’re also known for being so adorable that you just want to pinch their cheeks.
This is the largest member of the dog family in South America. Not surprisingly, experts believe their long legs were an adaptation to the high grasses of their native habitat. They’re kind of like the runway models of the wolf world.
Southern Right Whale Dolphin
These swift swimmers of the southern hemisphere have no teeth and no dorsal fin. They are often seen leaping continuously out of the water as part of their locomotive habits. Talk about sleek!
This is also known as the Sunda flying lemur, but in actuality it doesn’t fly — it jumps and glides. It also isn’t actually a lemur. The Sunda Colugo lives in the trees of Southeast Asia in Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, and Singapore and is active mainly at night. Can you believe those eyes? All the better to see you with…
These small antelope are found in the lowland rainforests of Ivory Coast and other African countries. They feed on mostly leaves and fruit.
These hamster-sized moles dwell in the wet low areas of eastern Canada and the northeastern United States. They use their pink, fleshy feelers (which contain 25,000 sensory receptors) as touch organs. They also use them to creep everyone out.
These East Asian dogs, also known as Tanuki, are named for their resemblance to the raccoon. They’re not related, nor do they have those cute, tiny people-hands that raccoons have. Bummer.
The world is full of mysterious (and totally awesome) creatures…