#SeaSaturday- Sea Cows!

MOOOOOOOOOOOO!

Actually, it’s more like squeaks, squeals, and screams, at least so far as humans can hear.

Sea cows is actually a wrong term. Stellar’s Sea Cows are actually extinct. What people generally mean when they say Sea Cow is a Manatee. At the end we’ll put some pictures of these funny creatures. However, right now let’s look at what they are and where they live.

Manatees (family Trichechidae, genus Trichechus) are large, fully aquatic, mostly herbivorous marine mammals sometimes known as sea cows. There are three accepted living species of Trichechidae, representing three of the four living species in the order Sirenia: the Amazonian manatee (Trichechus inunguis), the West Indian manatee (Trichechus manatus), and the West African manatee (Trichechus senegalensis). They measure up to 4.0 metres (13.1 ft) long, weigh as much as 590 kilograms (1,300 lb),[1] and have paddle-like flippers. The etymology of the name is dubious, with connections having been made to Latin “manus” (hand), and to a word sometimes cited as “manati” used by the Taíno, a pre-Columbian people of the Caribbean, meaning “breast”.[2] Manatees are occasionally called sea cows, as they are slow plant-eaters, peaceful and similar to cows on land. They often graze on water plants in tropical seas.[3]

Manatees have a mass of 400 to 550 kilograms (880 to 1,210 lb), and mean length of 2.8 to 3.0 metres (9.2 to 9.8 ft), with maxima of 4.6 metres (15 ft) and 1,775 kilograms (3,913 lb) seen (the females tend to be larger and heavier). When born, baby manatees have an average mass of 30 kilograms (66 lb). They have a large, flexible, prehensile upper lip. They use the lip to gather food and eat, as well as using it for social interactions and communications. Manatees have shorter snouts than their fellow sirenians, the dugongs. Their small, widely spaced eyes have eyelids that close in a circular manner. The adults have no incisor or canine teeth, just a set of cheek teeth, which are not clearly differentiated into molars and premolars. These teeth are repeatedly replaced throughout life, with new teeth growing at the rear as older teeth fall out from farther forward in the mouth, similarly to elephants.[5][6] At any given time, a manatee typically has no more than six teeth in each jaw of its mouth.[6] Its tail is paddle-shaped, and is the clearest visible difference between manatees and dugongs; a dugong tail is fluked, similar in shape to a that of a whale. Females have two teats, one under each flipper,[7] a characteristic that was used to make early links between the manatee and elephants.

Manatees are unusual amongst mammals in possessing just six cervical vertebrae,[8] which may be due to mutations in the homeotic genes.[9] All other mammals have seven cervical vertebrae,[10] other than the two-toed and three-toed sloths.

Like horses, they have a simple stomach, but a large cecum, in which they can digest tough plant matter. In general, their intestines have a typical length of about 45 meters, which is unusually long for animals of their size.[11]

Apart from mothers with their young, or males following a receptive female, manatees are generally solitary animals.[6] Manatees spend approximately 50% of the day sleeping submerged, surfacing for air regularly at intervals of less than 20 minutes. The remainder of the time is mostly spent grazing in shallow waters at depths of 1–2 metres (3.3–6.6 ft). The Florida subspecies (T. m. latirostris) has been known to live up to 60 years. Generally, manatees swim at about 5 to 8 kilometres per hour (3 to 5 mph). However, they have been known to swim at up to 30 kilometres per hour (20 mph) in short bursts. Manatees inhabit the shallow, marshy coastal areas and rivers of the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico (T. manatus, West Indian manatee), the Amazon basin (T. inunguis, Amazonian manatee), and West Africa (T. senegalensis, West African manatee).[20] West Indian manatees prefer warmer temperatures and are known to congregate in shallow waters. They frequently migrate through brackish water estuaries to freshwater springs. They cannot survive below 15 °C (60 °F). Their natural source for warmth during winter is warm, spring-fed rivers.” Wikipedia

Excuse all of the links, I’m very sorry.

Anyhow, the funny pictures are now presented, *drum roll*

I don’t know how they put those shirts on the manatees, but it is funny.

Anyway, see you next Saturday!

Sarah E.

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#ElephantFriday- Update

Once again, #ElephantFriday is saying, see you some other day.

#ElephantFriday is being transformed into #FavoriteFriday, which will b taking everybody’s favorite animals and doing posts about them. We’d like to be able to do everybody’s favorite animal, and if you would like us to write about yours, then comment here or on any of the #FavoriteFriday posts. Also you can contact us and request a full essay on a certain animal, which we will either post on the website, or send direct to you, whatever you want.

I almost forgot, Little Ellie wants to say goodbye, as we won’t be doing any more elephant posts, unless someone requests, or we do it on the blog.

Baby-Elephant-RPZoo

#FavoriteFriday will begin next week! Before that please submit your requests, so we can do a post expressly for you. (Also include if you are okay with us stating who we got the request from, for privacy purposes)

All the best!

Sarah E.

 

#TurtleThursdays- Green Sea Turtles

 

(Info from Source)

“Green sea turtle – named for the green color of the fat under its shell. (In some areas, the Pacific green turtle is also called the black sea turtle.)

They are easily distinguished from other sea turtles because they have a single pair of prefrontal scales (scales in front of its eyes), rather than two pairs as found on other sea turtles. Head is small and blunt with a serrated jaw. Carapace is bony without ridges and has large, non-overlapping, scutes (scales) present with only 4 lateral scutes. Body is nearly oval and is more depressed (flattened) compared to Pacific green turtles. All flippers have 1 visible claw. The carapace color varies from pale to very dark green and plain to very brilliant yellow, brown and green tones with radiating stripes. The plastron varies from white, dirty white or yellowish in the Atlantic populations to dark grey-bluish-green in the Pacific populations. Hatchlings are dark-brown or nearly black with a white underneath and white flipper margins. Continue reading “#TurtleThursdays- Green Sea Turtles”

#FoxWednesday- Update!

#FoxWednesday is leaving and becoming #WalkingWednesday, which is actually the exact opposite of what we’ll be talking about.

I’m planning to talk about some of the fastest creatures on earth, and all about them every month. I’ll choose a new animal every month, and a new subject about that animal every week, meaning one week we’ll talk about anatomy, next week special abilities needed, next week why they need speed and so on and so forth.

My reason for changing, is because I’m trying to let these titles roll off the tongue. That is actually seriously the real reason. Lol!

At the beginning of May, I’ll begin Walking Wednesday. So bye till then!

goodbye twoGoodbye.jpg

 

Ocelots

baby ocelot

Aren’t they adorable?
The Ocelot is a small, nocturnal, wildcat that primarily lives in the rainforests of South America, but can also be found in Central America, Mexico, and even in small regions of southern Texas. They are about twice the size of a domestic cat and are the second largest cat in South America. At one point in time, the Ocelot was kept as a household pet, but it was not ideal since they can grow up to a grown man’s knee.
Normally their diet consists of iguanas, frogs, rabbits, crabs, fish, monkeys, rodents, and birds.
According to the University of Michigan’s Animal Diversity Web (ADW), ocelots mate between 5 to 10 times daily during the mating season, on account that it is very hard for the females to become pregnant.
Kittens are very small at birth, weighing around 7 to 12 ounces. They are born with their eyes closed, and later are able to see their mother when they are around 14 days old. The kittens are then weaned at 6 weeks old. Kittens may live with their mother for about two years, before going off on their own.

oclelotOcelots are not considered ‘endangered species’, however in certain regions, Ocelots face the threat of poachers and habitat loss. It is estimated that around 800,000 to 1.5 million are found worldwide, but in the U.S., just 30 Ocelots remain in Southeast Texas.

Nirvana_23

 

 

 

 

 

 

Animal of the day: Buffalo

Above is an African Buffalo. People generally tend to confuse Buffalo with American Bison. NO, they’re completely wrong! This is an American Bison.

yellowstone_bison_diana_levasseur_ste_small

There’s alot of difference, isn’t there?

Well, to talk about Buffalo. There are two kinds of Buffalo, African Buffaloes and Water Buffaloes, with Water Buffaloes including Wild Water Buffalo, Water Buffalo, and Italian Mediterranean Buffalo. Now in my opinion, Buffaloes look like Oxen. Example:

The ox, I confess has straighter horns, but the body shape and head shape are the same. So Basically Water Buffalo are pretty much oxen. Not only in looks, but also in scientific fact they are something of a second cousin. Oxen remaining a genus, and Water Buffalo being a species.

Anyway, enough comparison, let’s look at what buffaloes are and where they live.

First about African Buffaloes. Wikipedia’s description: Continue reading “Animal of the day: Buffalo”

#BunnyTuesdays- Update!

Say goodbye to Bunny Tuesdays, which are transforming into #Tiny Tuesdays! Now instead of only bunnies, I’ll be posting about all kinds of tiny creatures.

I’m driven to this by recently getting two chinchillas, but also by the fact that I’m trying to make the week events rhyme. EX: #TurtleThursdays, #SquidSundays, #SeaSaturdays, and #MammalMondays.

If you’ll miss the bunnies, don’t worry! I’ll still be featuring bunnies every now and then!

So let this bunny say goodbye!

bunny-waving.jpg

P.S. Starting #TinyTuesdays next week!

#MammalMonday- Bears

There are two things that come to mind when people think of bears. For kids it’s either Teddy bears or Fear of the big grizzly bear.

Well actually you don’t really need to be afraid of bears. They only attack you if you aggravate them, otherwise they run away from you. Now I’m going to do something I usually do, tell you about the different types. There are five main types.

Grizzly walk

Grizzly Bear: The most famous bear, and also one of the most dangerous.

Grizzly bears are majestic symbols of the wild. Bears live in and use a variety of habitat types, playing important roles in each one. This makes them an “umbrella species,” meaning that when we protect them and their habitat we also protect many species. Grizzly bears can also help ecosystems by distributing seeds and nutrients through their scat, and occasionally regulating ungulate populations. Continue reading “#MammalMonday- Bears”