#TinyTuesdays-Gerbils!

Gerbils are on the most popular rodents you can have as pets for many reasons. First Gerbils are not aggressive and typically only bite if provoked or under enormous stress. They are small and easy to handle, and they are sociable, loving the company of humans and other gerbils. Also, they are very cute!

cute_gerbils_by_ricky326123.jpg

AWWWWW!!!!

Gerbils come in many breeds, but only two are usually kept as pets: the Mongolian Gerbil and the fat-tailed gerbil. Mongolian Gerbisl are definetely the cutest and the most common. If you go to a petstore like petsmart or petco, and you look at their gerbils, there is a 90% chance that they are Mongolian Gerbils. Here is a comparison:

(I don’t like the fat-tailed that much)

Anyway, Gerbils are generally healthy creatures, but they can have a few health problems. Which is why it is recommended to get a gerbil from a breeder instead of a petstore, as you don’t particularly want a gerbil from a gerbil mill, do you?

A few different health problems that they can have include: Misalignment of incisors due to injury or malnutrition, Trauma caused by a fall; Neglect, which can cause the gerbils to not receive adequate food and water, causing serious health concerns, including dehydration, starvation, stomach ulcers, eating of bedding material, and cannibalism; Seizure disorder epilepsy, seizures are thought to be caused by fright, handling, or a new environment; Tumors, both benign and malignant; Tail sloughing, Gerbils can lose their tails due to improper handling, being attacked by another animal, or getting their tails stuck; Tyzzer’s disease; and Deafness and inner ear problems.

Most of those things are caused by fright, or improper handling, so be careful with your pet gerbil!

Also one thing you should know about gerbils….please get two! If you only have one gerbil, and you don’t spend all day with it and if you don’t have it next to you in your bedroom, that gerbil can get very sad. A friend of mine once had a gerbil, and every night she’d hear it scratching at the glass of it’s tank. Poor Wee Mite.

Gerbils are very sociable with their owners, often coming up to greet them when they come home.

Alrighty, that about sums it up! I’ll wind up with some cute gerbil pics. Bye Bye!

P.S. That last one is not animated.

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#WalkingWednesday-Complication

Sorry guys, I meant this to be a monthly thing. So I’ll start Walking Wednesday in August, okay? Alright, have a good day!

P.S. Ain’t he cute?

P.P.S. I’ll have a random post on Wednesday, though.

Too cute series!

Hey everyone!

Guess what? We are doing a series of too cute! Every week I’ll post a picture of the cutest little animals! Especially babies. ‘Cause everybody loves babies!….Right?

Well to introduce you we have our star of the show, Muffins! She’ll start up the competition and she’ll end it too!

Kitten Hi-Bye
Hiya!

Alright, well see you next week with the cutest thing on earth!

 

#MammalMondays-Leopards

Leopards! One of the world’s favorite cats.

Now many people can easily get confused with cheetahs and leopards. Let me show you the difference.

You see? Leopards are stockier, and tend to look heavier, while Cheetahs are made for quick movements and speed. Another way is to look at the face,

A Cheetah has tear stains and its face is rounder. Whereas Leopards, have a pantherlike face. Also you can look at their spots.

leopardvscheetahspots

As you can see, leopards have a rosette shaped spot, and cheetahs just have dots. Which do you like best?

Anyway, enough comparison between Leopards and cheetahs. What we all really want to know is why are leopards sometimes called panthers? Well, because Leopards are panthers. Also Black Panthers in Asia and Africa are leopards which have an overdose of black melanin in their skin. If you look closely, you can still see the typical leopard spots on them.

closeup-view-of-the-black-leopard-lying-on-the-tree-trunk-G34AGH

Now, please, don’t misunderstand me. The definition of Black Panthers is the color variant of any big cat species. This is why I said above that Black Panthers in Asia and Africa are leopards. Black Panthers in the Americas are actually Black Jaguars.

So let’s finally talk about leopards. (Not the Black ones)

Leopards typically have relatively short legs and a long body with a large skull. With smaller rosettes than a jaguar, the leopard has a better chance of hiding in the long dry grass in sub-Saharan Africa. Example:

camouflage-leopard.jpgleopard-camouflage

Crazy right?

Leopards have an acute sense of hearing and vision, which they depend upon heavily for hunting. Leopards are opportunists, they sit and wait until the perfect opportunity, which could you know be something like a wildebeest calf, to come along and then pounce on it. Leopards generally prefer prey in the weight range of 22-88 lbs. So leopards generally like medium-sized prey. A few examples would be Impalas, Gazelles, Warthogs Blue Wildebeest, Antelope, Black-backed jackal, and others. If no lions or tigers are around, Leopards will also go for giraffes or other large animals like that.

Leopards are solitary and territorial. Adults really only associate in the mating season. Females, unlike most other solitary cats, continue to interact with their offspring even after they have been weaned, and have even been observed to share their kill with them when they cant get any food. Males interact with their partners and cubs at times, and exceptionally this can extend beyond to two generations. Aggressive behavior is not very common and typically is only observed when defending a territory from an intruder.

A Leopards territory generally has about a 0.62 mile radius.But to give you a better idea of territories here is this Wikipedia quote:

“A study of leopards in the Namibian farmlands showed that the size of territories was not significantly affected by sex, rainfall patterns or season; it concluded that the higher the prey availability in an area, the greater the population density of leopards and the smaller the size of territories, but territories tend to expand if there is human interference (which has been notably high in the study area). Territorial sizes vary geographically and depending on habitat and availability of prey. In the Serengeti, they are as small as 33–38 km2 (13–15 sq mi) for males and 14–16 km2 (5.4–6.2 sq mi) for females, and as large as 451 km2 (174 sq mi) for males and 188 km2 (73 sq mi) for females in northeastern Namibia. They are even larger in arid and montane areas. Territories recorded in Nepal’s Bardia National Park, 48 km2 (19 sq mi) for males and 5–7 km2 (1.9–2.7 sq mi) for females, are smaller than those generally observed in Africa.”

Leopards communicate using white spots on their ears and tails. Leopards have a number of vocalizations, including grunts, purrs, snarls, and even meows! A Leopard roar has been alternatively called “sawing”. This is because it resembles the sound of sawing wood.

Well that’s about all, unless you want to know about man-eating leopards, but I think that’s a discussion for another time.

I shall see you, next Monday!

Ta-Ta!

Wiki Link:Leopard

Wiki Link:Black Panthers

Giant Pandas

Pandas are definitely one of the cutest bears in my opinion. They are soft, cute, fluffy, and just everything about them makes you want to go up and give them a hug.

When Pandas are born, they are born looking something like baby badgers. They are completely blind, pink, and furless. Around three weeks, old, however, they begin to develop their black and white patterns. Some pandas, instead of being black and white, they are brown and white. But, this is very rare.

panda 2

For years, people have debated on whether or not the Panda was related to a bear or a raccoon. Many scientists believed that the Giant Panda belonged to the Raccoon family (Procyonidae) since the Red Panda was more of that category. However, recent studies and tests on their DNA have proved that the Giant Panda, though it has relations to a Raccoon is, in fact, part of the bear family (Ursidae).

The Giant Panda does not have very many predators, though leopards do pose as a threat to the cubs. The panda’s primary predators are humans and habit lose. Habit lose is one of the things that first made the Giant Panda enter the “endangered species list”. However, recent studies have shown that the Giant Panda has, in fact, advanced one step further from becoming extinct thanks to the hard work and dedication of animal lovers such as your selves and the WWF.

panda 3

China is the Giant Pandas’ native homeland though they can be found in various zoos around the world. The panda is China’s national animal since, as I have stated before, it can only be found there as a wild animal, and it is on their topmost endangered species list.

Bamboo makes up 99% of their diet. During different seasons the pandas prefer to eat different parts of the bamboo. In summer and spring they like to eat different kinds of shoots; in autumn they like to eat the leaves; in winter they prefer to eat the roots. The 1% of food that I didn’t mention before is different for wild and captive pandas. The captive ones are usually fed fruits and panda cakes, whilst the wild ones hunt for pikas and other small rodents.

 

 

#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.

#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