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The world's weirdest animals
Pangolins are truly bizarre creatures. They are now famous because of the COVID pandemic because some people think they transmitted the virus to humans. But this is not confirmed yet. They curl up into a ball when afraid, just like armadillos. But they are actually closer to dogs and cats than to armadillos and anteaters. You can find them in Africa and Asia.
Madagascar is home to many strange animals, and most only live there. One great example is the aye-aye, with its huge eyes, ever-growing teeth and long fingers. They are a type of lemur and can be found exclusively in the jungles of Madagascar, where they come out at night to find food.
3. Armadillo Girdled Lizard
This lizard looks like a tiny dragon. Especially when they roll themselves up to protect from danger. They are one of the few lizard species who give birth to their babies, not eggs, and there is some evidence that the mothers feed the babies, which is even more uncommon. You can find them in South Africa.
4. Magnificent frigatebird
These incredible birds live in the Galapagos Islands. When open, their wings can reach nearly two and a half meters combined, and they can fly as high as 2,500 meters above sea level. What makes these birds truly strange is the big red sac the males have on their chests, which they balloon up to attract females.
These cat-like animals can measure up to 1.2 meters in length. They have long bodies, small rounded ears and short legs. They are so big that they can eat even adult lemurs. You can find them in Madagascar.
6. Velvet ants
Confusingly, these insects are actually wasps. The females are wingless and hairy, and look a lot like ants. Some specimens in Chile are black and white - that's why they are also called ‘panda ants’. These bugs are known for their extremely painful stings. In fact, that's why these wasps are also known by another name: ‘cow killers’.
7. Pink Fairy Armadillo
The pink fairy armadillo is a tiny creature found only in central Argentina, and they are so rare that scientists have not even been able to classify their conservation status. Small enough to fit in a human hand, these tiny armadillos are nocturnal and burrow in the ground.
8. Blue-ringed Octopus
The blue-ringed octopus is found in coral reefs in the Pacific and Indian oceans, from Japan to Australia. They have yellow skin and typical blue and black rings that change color dramatically when the animal is threatened. They are recognized as one of the world's most venomous marine animals.
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To curl up (verb)
To wrap around oneself, as a protection strategy.
Ever-growing (verb, adjective)
Something that never stops growing.
Wrapped like a girdle (an accessory used by women under their dresses before the 20th Century that would make their waist very small).
To feed (verb)
To give food, usually to an animal.
A hollow, flexible structure resembling a bag or pouch.
To balloon up (verb)
To inflate like a balloon.
The injury of an insect with their pointy sting, which can sometimes contain poison.
To burrow (verb)
To hide under the ground by digging a hole.
Poisonous, that have poison.