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" CARD 21

KOALA
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ORDER
Marsupialia
FAMILY
Phalangeridae
~ GENUS & SPECIES
~ Phascolarctos cinereus
The furry gray koala lives high in the tops of eucalyptus trees.
Now a protected species, it is still threatened by the loss of
habitat due to seasonal brush fires.
~ KEY FACTS
I ~ I SIZES
~ Height: 24 in.
Weight: Males, up to 26 lb.
Females, 17 lb. Smaller in
northern part of range.
BREEDING
Sexual maturity: Males, 3-4
years. Females, 2-3 years.
Mating: Dec. - March (Southern
Hemisphere's summer).
Gestation: 25- 35 days.
No. of young: 1.
LIFESTYLE
Habit: Solitary tree-dweller, except
during mating.
Call: Harsh, unattractive call;
sounds like sawing wood.
Diet: Eucalyptus leaves.
Lifespan: 15- 20 years.
RELATED SPECIES
Phalangeridae family includes
phalangers and possums.
HOW THE KOALA CLIMBS
The koala clasps a tree trunk between its
forepaws, and then draws its hind legs up
together in a series of small rapid jumps.
MCMXCI IMP BVIIMP INC WILDLIFE FACT FILETM
Range of the koala.
DISTRIBUTION
Coastal regions of Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria,
and parts of South Australia, with the largest concentrations in
New Sout h Wales and Victoria.
CONSERVATION
Now a protected species. Sanctuaries flourish in Victoria and
Queensland. Re-introduced into South Australia, where it had
become locally extinct.
PRINTED IN U.S.A.
"forefinger"
spread out to give
a firm grip.
On the hind feet ,
the toes are also
separated, with the
"big toe" off to one
side.
0160200031 PACKET 3a
While it looks like a small bear, the koala is actually
a marsupial whose hands and feet
are specially adapted for climbing trees.
When it descends to the ground, it shuffles along
awkwardly on its short, stocky legs.
~ HABITAT
The koala lives almost exclu-
sively in the top branches of
eucalyptus trees. Its strong
legs and sharp claws help it
grip the trunks.
~ KOALAS & MAN
As recently as a hundred years
ago, the koala was wide-
spread in Australia. But
increased settlement by man
brought about a dramatic
decline in its population.
Much of the koala's natural
A nocturnal animal, it feeds
at night on the young shoots
and leaves of high branches,
and spends its day sleeping
curled up in a fork of a tree.
habitat was destroyed by fires
set deliberately to clear the
land. The fur trade introduced
another threat to the koala;
more than two million skins
were exported from Australia
in 1924 alone.
DID YOU KNOW?
The koala never drinks
because it gets all the liquid
it needs from eucalyptus
leaves. "Koala" is the abo-
rigine word for " no water."
The koala is an excellent
swimmer, crossing rivers in
order to survive heavy
flooding.
Ironically, many koalas are
killed in sanctuaries by
being run over by cars '
belonging to visitors.
A newborn koala is only
the size of a lima bean. Its
hind legs are barely formed,
but its forelimbs and claws
are relatively well devel-
oped. It drags itself to the
pouch following a trail of
saliva laid down by its
mother.
~ FOOD & FEEDING
During the course of its
evolution, the koala has
developed special cheek
pouches that store food and a
digestive system to handle a
diet consisting entirely of
eucalyptus leaves. Of the
more than 100 species of
eucalyptus tree that grow in
Australia, the koala feeds on
only twelve.
Koalas eat between one and
two pounds of leaves daily
and can easily exhaust their
own food supply. The main
difficulty in keeping koalas
alive in zoos and sanctuaries is
obtaining enough eucalyptus
leaves of the right species
with which to keep them fed .
They cannot survive without
eucalyptus.
~ BREEDING
Koalas mate between
December and March. A
single baby is born 35 days
later. It is blind, hairless, and
only 3/
4
inch long. By instinct,
it drags itself into its mother's
pouch, which opens to the
rear rather than to the front as
with most other marsupials.
Inside the pouch, the baby
koala feeds first on mother's
milk and later on half-digested
food passed through the
mother's rectum.
After six months, the young
koala leaves the pouch and
clings to its mother's back,
remaining with her until the
following mating season. It
then moves to another tree
and lives independently for
two to four years until it is
sexually mature.
Left: At almost
a year old, this
koala still clings
to its mother's
back. She seems
happy to
oblige, and
although her
load is no
longer light,
her specially
adapted
hands and feet
let her climb
with ease.
Right: An adult
koala eats
about 1-2
pounds of
eucalyptus
leaves a day,
some of which
it crams into its
cheek pouches
for chewing
later.
Left: A baby
koala spends
the first 6
months of its
life in its
mother's
pouch. Then,
for the next 2
or 3 months, it
clings to its
mother's fur
during the day,
returning to
her pouch at
night.
Left: Koala
mothers and
their young
enjoy a close
relationship.
She will
happily carry
her youngster
until it is time
for it to
become in-
dependent.
"'" CARD 22
ORANGUTAN
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.. ORDER FAMILY
~ Primates Pongidae
The shy and solitary orangutan is second only to the gorilla in size
among the primates. Found solely on the islands of Borneo and
Sumatra, its population has decreased drastically.
KEY FACTS
SIZES
Length: Males, 4 ft. Females, 3 ft.
Weight: Males, 1 30-200 lb.
Females, 90-110 lb.
BREEDING
Sexual maturity: 8-1 0 years.
Mating: Year-round.
Gestation: 260-270 days.
No. of young: Usually a single
young; twins are rare.
LIFESTYLE
Call: Squeaks and whines. Adult
males make long, bubbling calls
and also roar.
. Range of the orangutan.
DISTRIBUTION
Habit: Diurnal and mainly solitary.
Diet: Tropical fruits, leaves, shoots,
bark, insects, and eggs.
Restricted to the islands of Borneo and Sumatra.
CONSERVATION
Lifespan: Average 35 years.
RELATED SPECIES
There is one species of orangutan,
with two subspecies living in
Borneo and Sumatra.
In spite of the governments of Singapore and Hong Kong
prohibiting their import and export, orangutans are seriously
endangered. Protection schemes have had some success in
returning orangutans bred in captivity to the wild, but they
need to have secure areas provided in their natural habitat.
SWINGING THROUGH THE TREES
An orangutan is a heavy-bodied
animal. It uses its weight to swing
back and forth on the branch it is
holding, until it comes close enough
to reach out and grab a branch of the
next tree. The orangutan moves slowly
and carefully through the trees, using
all four limbs.
Its hands and feet are designed for
holding and grasping branches, and
its immensely powerful arms enable it
to swing and climb in the trees easily.
The big toe on each foot can rotate
to touch the ends of the other toes,
like the thumb on our hands. In effect,
the orangutan has four "hands" for
IDMCMXCI IMP BV/ IMP INC WILDLIFE FACT FILETM PRINTED IN U.SA
climbing trees and gripping branches.
On the ground, the orangutan walks
on all four limbs, with the feet bent
inward and clenched, and the arms
either placed flat or clenched on the
ground.
0160200041 PACKET 4
Of the three great apes-the orangutan, the
chimpanzee, and the gorilla-the orangutan is the only
one to live outside Africa. Hidden in the dense
tropical rainforests which are its home,
it is also unique among apes for being
truly forest-dwelling.

The orangutan lives a solitary
life in the treetops of the
rainforest. With the excep-
tion of adult males, orangu-
tans rarely descend to the
ground. The orangutan is a
diurnal animal-that is,
active during daylight hours.
At night, females and young-
sters sleep in a nest of
branches placed in the fork
of a tree. Because males are
heavier, they generally prefer
to sleep on the ground. All
orangutans sleep on their

A dominant male orangutan
may have a large breeding
territory and mate with
several females. Mating
occurs year-round and
females give birth to a single
offspring every 3-6 years. A
baby orangutan grows very
slowly. It may become
somewhat independent at 3
years of age, but it will stay
with its mother until she
gives birth again.
Because female orangutans
do not mate again until an
offspring is at least 3 years
old, they may only succeed
in raising two to three young
in a lifetime.
sides with their arms cushion-
ing their heads. At daybreak,
orangutans leave their nests
and search for food.
Orangutans are far less
sociable than other apes and
do not live in large social
groups. Adult males are
particularly solitary and stake
out areas of forest which they
defend as their own territo-
ries, fighting other males who
intrude if necessary. Females
occasionally group together
loosely with their young.
Left: A
newborn
orangutan
weighs no
more than 5
pounds, but is
already well-
developed.
Totally
dependent on
its mother for
the first 18
months, it
suckles from
her, travels by
clinging to her,
and sleeps in
her nest at
night.
FOOD' &: FEEDING
Fruit, nuts, leaves, bark, insects,
and eggs form the diet of an
orangutan. When the food
supply in a particular area is
plentiful, an orangutan may
remain in one place for a
period of time to feed. Al-
though several orangutans
may feed from the same tree,
there is little social interaction
or competition among them.
Orangutans, like the other
Left: Male
orangutans
have large cheek
pouches.
Right: Fruit
makes up half
the orangutan's
diet. It follows
fruit-eating
birds to fresh
supplies. It uses
its strong jaws
and teeth to
open hard or
spiky skins.
apes, appear to be highly
intelligent. They have the
ability to memorize the
geography of their surround-
ings and will travel great
distances to find trees that
have ripe fruit.
When orangutans are
thirsty, they locate a hollow in
a tree where water has
collected from past rain-
storms.
ORANGUTAN &: MAN
The orangutan poses no
threat to man, yet man is its
only enemy. The orangutan's
natural habitat has been
destroyed to provide land
and timber for an increasing
human population.
Female orangutans are
fOlD YOU KNOW?
Because the orangutan
spends most of its life in trees,
its arms are longer and
stronger than any other
ape's.
"Orang" and "utan" are
the Malay words for "man"
and "jungle." The literal
L
slaughtered so that their babies
can be captured for zoos. The
baby orangutans often die in
captivity. Since the breeding
rate of the orangutan is rela-
tively slow, its numbers have not
recovered and it is now a
seriously endangered species.
meaning of the name, therefore,
is "man of the jungle."
Centuries ago, orangutans
were much larger than they are
today. Fossil remains show that
a species of giant orangutan
existed in China 500,000 years
ago.
JAGUAR
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~ ClASS
'IIIIIIIIIII Camivora
~ ORDER
~ Felidae
"" CARD 23
GROUP 1: MAMMALS
~ F A M I L Y
~ Panthera onca
The jaguar is the subject of many myths and hunters' tales. The
largest American wildcat, it is now rare in its natural habitat as the
result of being hunted for its attractive fur.
-
KEY FACTS
li1
SIZES
Length: 44-73 in. Tail 18-30 in.
Weight: Males, 125-250 lb.
Females, 100-200 lb.
[I]
BREEDING
Sexual maturity: 3 years.
Mating: Non-seasonal in tropics;
early autumn in extremes of range.
Gestation: 93-110 days.
No. of young: 1-4 cubs.
li1
LIFESTYLE
Habit: Solitary, except in breeding
season, when they come together
to mate.
Diet: Ground-living mammals;
domestic stock, fish, frogs, turtles,
and small alligators.
Lifespan: Up to 22 years.
li1
RELATED SPECIES
Eight subspecies; also P. tigris,
P. leo, P. pardus, and P. uncia.
Range of the jaguar.
DISTRIBUTION
Central and South America as far south as Patagonia; the
largest jaguars are found in Mato Grosso in Brazil.
CONSERVATION
All subspecies are endangered. Many are extinct except in
zoos, where they breed successfully. At present, the greatest
threats to the jaguar are overhunting (mostly for its fur) and
the loss of its habitat to farming.
FEATURES OF THE JAGUAR & LEOPARD
A jaguar's coat (above).
A leopard's coat (below) .
The jaguar's jaw is larger and The leopard's head is smaller
Although both animals have similar body outlines,
the jaguar is more heavily built, with a stocky
appearance and sturdy legs.
even more powerful looking than and narrower than that of the
the leopard's jaw. heavier jaguar.
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Jaguars live in a variety of habitats,
from dense jungle and scrubland to reed
thickets and shoreline forests. They will even live in
open country, provided the grass and rocks offer
enough cover for hunting, and a reliable supply
of water is available.
~ HABITS
Adult jaguars are solitary,
seeking each other out only
during breeding season, when
male and female stay together
for a short time to mate. A
young jaguar stays with its
mother for a few years before
leaving to find hunting
territories of its own.
DID YOU KNOW?
One jaguar tagged by a
biologist was next seen 500
miles away in a new hunting
location.
The jaguar is the only big
The size of a jaguar's terri-
tory depends on food avail-
ability. In an area where food
is plentiful, such as a forest, a
jaguar can survive in a circular
area of about three miles in di-
ameter. Where food is scarce,
it may need to roam over an
area of 200 square miles.
cat that does not roar.
Amazonian Indians tell of
jaguars emerging from the
forest to play with village
children.
~ BREEDING
Very little is known about the
family life of wild jaguars.
They have been hunted
almost to extinction for their
fur. Biologists now find it
difficult to study wild jaguars
because they have become so
rare. Most information comes
from studying captive jaguars
in zoos, where the animals
have been bred successfully.
Males and females meet in
the wild only to mate. The
male leaves as soon as mating
is over, and the female brings
up the young on her own.
She gives birth to one to four
cubs, which are blind at birth
~ FOOD Est HUNTING
Jaguars hunt mainly on the
ground; however they will
climb trees to lie in wait for
prey. The jaguar can cover
short distances rapidly, but it
tires quickly. It hunts mainly
at night and often surprises
and weigh only 25-32 ounces.
The cubs begin exploring the
world outside the den at
about two weeks, when their
eyes have opened. They begin
hunting with their mother at
the age of six months. They
remain with her for the first
two years before leaving to
find a territory of their own in
which to hunt. A jaguar is
sexually mature at three years
of age.
Right: All-black jaguars are not
uncommon. These cubs have a
spotted father and a black
mother.
its unsuspecting prey.
Its food consists mostly of
forest animals varying in size
from mice to deer. The jaguar
is a proficient swimmer and
also eats frogs, fish, turtles,
and small alligators. It is espe-
cially skilled at catching fish,
which it does by flipping the
fish out onto the riverbank
with its paw. Jaguars will also
kill domestic animals, particu-
larly where the forest has
been cleared for farmland.
Left: Within
their range,
jaguars may
occasionally be
found in
scrubland,
although they
usually prefer
areas with
plenty of fresh
water. They are
excellent
swimmers and
can supplement
their diet with
fish, frogs,
turtles, and
even small alli-
gators.
Jaguars were once found in an
area ranging from Arizona to
Argentina, but ruthless hunting
has reduced their population.
The clearing of forests to build
new settlements and pastures
for cattle has forced them out
of much of their original
habitat. Jaguars are thought to
be numerous in the upper basin
of the Orinoco, in Venezuela,
but everywhere else they are in
danger of extinction. There are
fewer than 200 wild jaguars left
in all of Argentina. Soon, the
only remaining populations will
live in zoos.
Although jaguars have a
reputation as man-eaters, there
are numerous stories about
men being followed for miles
through the forest by solitary
jaguars. These stories give
credence to the theory that the
animals prefer to escort men off
their territory rather than attack
them.
'" CARD 24
MOOSE
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ORDER
Artiodactyla
FAMILY
Cervidae
GENUS &: SPECIES
Alces alces
The long-legged moose is the largest of aI/living deer.
It feeds by browsing on trees and marshy vegetation
and must eat 4S pounds of food a day.
KEY FACTS
SIZES
Length: 8-10 ft .
Height: To shoulder, 5-7 ft.
Weight: 800-2,000 lb. Size varies
according to sex. Female smaller
than male.
BREEDING
Sexual maturity: 16-28 months.
Mating season: September to
October.
Gestation: 240-250 days.
No. of young: 1 or 2.
LIFESTYLE
Habit: Solitary or in small groups.
Diet: Leaves, branches and twigs,
and water and marsh plants.
Lifespan: Up to 20 years. Average
1 0-1 5 years.
RELATED SPECIES
American moose and Eurasian elk
form a single genus and species
with no close relatives. Still, there
are 40 species of deer (family
Cervidae) worldwide.
FEATURES OF THE MOOSE
Males are taller
and heavier than
females. Males
MCMXCI IMP BV/ IMP INC WILDLIFE FACT FILETM
Range of the moose.
DISTRIBUTION
Northern North America, including Alaska and Canada.
The sli ghtly smaller Eurasian elk is found in Scandinavia,
northeastern Europe, and parts of northern Asia.
CONSERVATION
Extremely abundant in some areas, although populations
change depending on severity of winter. Of the 150,000
moose in Alaska, 10,000 are killed annually by hunters.
Broad muzzle and
overhanging top lip.
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Moose are widespread throughout
Canada and Alaska, where the largest
animals, which stand as high as seven to eight
feet at the shoulder, are found. Slightly
smaller moose are also found in parts
of Europe and Asia, where they
are known as elk.
~ HABITS
Moose are usually solitary
animals. During spring and
summer the sexes live apart;
calves (young moose) live with
their mothers. During the
warmer months moose prefer
low-lying areas, often near
lakes and marshes.
When winter comes the
moose move to higher
ground, where they seek
shelter in forests among birch
and pine trees.
Where food is plentiful,
moose form small groups that
include a bull (male moose),
several cows (females), and
their calves. They paw at the
snow to expose the edible
grass and twigs below. Still,
harsh winter conditions often
prevent moose from finding
enough to eat.
Moose that are weak from
hunger in winter are some-
times attacked by wolves.
~ BREEDING
Rut (mating season) lasts for
several weeks in the fall. The
bull competes for one female
at a time, but he mates with
several in turn. Dominant bulls
drive younger bulls away and
fight among themselves for the
females. The bulls that become
badly injured while fighting for
mates often fall prey to wolves
and bears.
The cow gives birth to one
or two young in late spring.
The calves cannot walk for the
first few days, but by two ~
weeks of age they are able to . ~
browse for their own food, and .jg
they follow their mother as she ~
forages. They are weaned at ~
o
five months but stay with their ~
mother until she gives birth ~
~ FOOD & FEEDING
Moose browse for food during
both day and night but are
most active at dawn and dusk.
They feed on the branches and
leaves of willow, birch, and
aspen trees.
During the summer months
moose feed extensively on
vegetation that grows in and
around lakes and marshes.
They wade in water up to their
shoulders to feed. They also eat
underwater plants by submerg-
ing their heads to reach the
roots and stems.
When lakes and marshes
freeze over in winter, moose
feed on berries, twigs, and
branches. They also strip bark
from trees and paw through
snow to reach vegetation.
Right: In summer moose feed on
sodium-rich aquatic plants found
in lakes and marshes.
again. The cow sometimes
drives the older calves away
but allows them to rejoin her
when she and her new calves
move on.
Above: Older females often give
birth to twins.
Left: Rival males fighting.
DID YOU KNOW?
During breeding season
hunters often imitate the fe-
male moose's call to attract
males.
Bulls have been known to
attack trains, possibly mis-
taking the whistle for the call
of a rival bull.
Moose can trot as fast as 35
miles an hour. They are good
swimmers and can remain un-
derwater for up to a minute.
Moose are bred in the
Soviet Union for food and to
work on farms.
A moose becomes helpless
in very deep snow (below)
and can be overtaken by a
hunter on snowshoes.
"'" CARD 25
BLACK-TAILED JACKRABBIT
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.... ORDER
~ Lagomorpha
FAMILY
Leporidae
.... GENUS & SPECIES
~ . Lepus californicus
The black-tailed jackrabbit is actually a hare, not a rabbit. It is dis-
tinguished by its huge, oversized ears, which allow it to hear the
faintest sounds and stay cool during the day.
S'J KEY FACTS
~ SIZES
~ Length: 24 in., head to tail.
Ears, 8 in. long.
Weight: Around 11 lb. Females are
slightly heavier.
BREEDING
Sexual maturity: 8 months.
Breeding season: January-
September. Spring is peak time.
Gestation: 41 -47 days.
No. of young: Up to 6. Females
may have 3-4 litters a year.
LIFESTYLE
Habit: Nocturnal, solitary except in
breeding season.
Range of the black-tailed jackrabbit.
DISTRIBUTION Diet: Grasses, herbs, succulents,
woody twigs, and bark.
lifespan: 1-5 years in the wild.
Western and central United States, northern Mexico.
CONSERVATION
RELATED SPECIES
There are 21 species of jackrabbit
and hare in the United States. The
white-tailed jackrabbit lives in the
Northwest.
As the most common of North American hare species, the
black-tailed jackrabbit breeds quickly and successfully. It is
considered a pest because of the damage it does to crops,
and it is a popular target for game hunters as well.
HOW THE JACKRABBIT KEEPS COOL
Living above ground in semidesert , the jackrabbit
avoids overheating in the scorching sun by scraping
out shallow, shaded holes, called forms, to lie in.
Sometimes the animal will simply stretch out with its
legs and body extended so the maximum surface area
of its body is touching the cooler ground.
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The jackrabbit lives in semidesert and prairie regions.
Its brown fur gives it effective camouflage against the
sparse, dry vegetation. If it is spotted by predators,
however, it can run faster than a racehorse
and will/eap over rocks and bushes in an
attempt to evade capture.
~ HABITS
The nocturnal jackrabbit is well
adapted to life in the hot
desert and prairie regions of
North America. It lives in open
spaces among the thin desert
ground cover of plants such as
the sagebrush and cactus.
Most of the time, the jackrab-
bit is solitary. Like all hares, it
lives above ground.
During the cool of the even-
ing, the jackrabbit emerges
from its resting place to feed
under the cover of darkness. Its
large ears funnel sound and
enable it to hear signs of
danger. Good hearing is
essential to the survival of the
jackrabbit, which is prey to
wolves, coyotes, and pumas.
In addition to its excellent
hearing, the jackrabbit also
has sharp eyesight. Like other
hares, it will sit upright on its
haunches so it can better view
its surroundings.
Below: For most of the year,
jackrabbits are solitary.
~ BREEDING
jackrabbits normally breed 9
months out of the year. At the
beginning of the breeding
season, males box each other
with their forefeet and chase
the females, often kicking and
biting them. 1 ~
Young jackrabbits are born 6 ~ 3
weeks after mating in a con- ~
cealed site above ground. The u:
young have furry coats and
their eyes are open. Soon, the
mother separates them into
individual hiding places.
The young remain in their
hiding places until their mother
comes to suckle them. Eventu-
ally, they begin eating small
amounts of vegetation in
addition to their mother's milk .
II
Ii:
o
-<=
.;.:;
c
(]
When 'the young are weaned 3 ~
after 3 weeks, the female mates ~ ~
again and produces another ~ ~
litter. The young are sexually ~ ~
o
mature within a year.
I I ~ ~
~ SPECIAL ADAPTATION
The jackrabbit's eyes are situated
on the sides of its head, giving it
all -around vision which enables
it to spot danger coming from
any direction.
Its fur is brown with black tips,
which provides an effective
DID YOU KNOW?
jackrabbits living in the desert
rarely drink water. They obtain
all the moisture they need from
water-retaining plants such as
cacti.
jackrabbits can reach a speed
of 50 miles per hour and can
leap as high as 5 feet .
The undersides of a jackrab-
bit's feet are covered with
long, brushlike hairs, which
provide both a grip and a
soft cushion on hard sur-
faces.
A female jackrabbit usually
suckles her young once a
day, spending no longer than
5-10 minutes with them.
~ FOOD &: FEEDING
jackrabbits leave their resting
places at dusk to feed.
Occasionally, they raid crops
and cause extensive damage.
When food is extremely
scarce, they will survive by
gnawing the bark of trees.
The animals feed for short
Above: In early
spring, jack-
rabbits come
together to
breed. Males
fight each other
for access to
females.
Left: The female
places her young
in separate
hiding places to
prevent a
predator from
taking them all.
periods, stopping in between
to rest. Long, chisel-like
incisor teeth bite the stems
of grass and herbs, which are
then chewed and shredded
by the flattened molars.
Below: Jackrabbits include twigs
and woody shrubs in their diet.
I
STRIPED SKUNK


ORDER
Carnivora
FAMilY
Muste/idae
.... GENUS & SPECIES
Mephitis mephitis
The striped skunk is a night-time hunter, conspicuously colored to
deter its enemies. Skunks live in small groups, often sharing a
burrow with the species that dug it, perhaps a fox or a raccoon.
KEY FACTS
SIZES
length: Males, 1 3-18 in. Females
slightly smaller. Tail, 7-10 in.
Weight: 3-6 lb .
BREEDING
Sexual maturity: From 11 months.
Mating: February and March.
Gestation: 62-66 days.
No. of young: Usually 4 or 5.
LIFESTYLE
Habit: Nocturnal, sociable. Adult
males solitary in summer.
Range of the striped skunk.
DISTRIBUTION
Diet: Mainly insects and small
mammals. Seasonal berries, nuts,
fallen fruit, and birds' eggs.
lifespan: 7 years in the wild, 8-10
years in captivity.
Widespread throughout Canada and the United States,
except in Alaska.
CONSERVATION
RELATED SPECIES
The western spotted skunk,
Spi/oga/e gracia/is, is common over
large areas of North America.
Common throughout their range, striped skunks are hunted
for their skins, but only with a hunting license. Many skunks
are run over by cars every year on the roads-often because
they stand their ground and spray rather than running away.
THE SKUNK'S UNPLEASANT SPRAY
The skunk is best known for its ability to cause an
extremely unpleasant odor. It ejects a strong-smelling
fluid from its anal glands when it is threatened. The
skunk aims its spray, which can travel 12 feet , at the
victim's
The skunk warns
that it is ready to
spray by turning
its rear end
toward the
intruder, raising
its tail, and
pattering its
front feet.
MCMXCI IMP BV/IMP INC WILDLIFE FACT FILETM PRINTED IN U.S.A.
If the warning fails
to deter the
intruder, the skunk
hisses, spreads its
haunches, and
sprays, seldom
missing. It can
spray repeatedly
seven or eight
times.
0160200041 PACKET 4
Of all the animals that have warning coloration/
the striped skunk's easily recognized white stripe
makes it one of the most successful at deterring its
predators. Its marking serves as a warning to
intruders that they will be sprayed with
foul-smelling fluid if they do not retreat.

Striped skunks spend the day
in small groups, sleeping in
dens that they dig them-
selves or borrow from other
animals species. They often
share dens with foxes or
raccoons. The den is often
occupied in summer by
females and their young.
At dusk, the skunks
emerge from their den to
forage for food. In towns
and cities, skunks live in
woodpiles, sheds, or under
houses. In the country, they
are often found in the open
forest.
Skunks deter enemies by
spraying a very offensive-
smelling fluid (see back page).
It can cause temporary
blindness, but its main
purpose is to stop the intruder
from breathing for a few
seconds while the skunk
escapes.
DID YOU KNOW?
The striped skunk's scien-
tific name comes from a
Latin word meaning "poi-
sonous vapor."
Striped skunks do not use
their spray on each other,
even in the fiercest fight.
The only predator which
appears to be immune to
the effects of a skunk's spray
is the great horned owl,
which hunts the striped
skunk at night.
Skunks are resistant to
snake venom. They can
survive ten times the
amount of venom needed to
kill an_o_t_h_e_r _a_n_ im_a_l_o_f _si_m_i_la_r---J1 '
size. .
left: Skunks may be active
throughout the winter.
FOOD & FEEDING
Striped skunks are meat eaters,
feeding mainly on large insects
like crickets and grasshoppers
and on small mammals. They
also forage in the soil and
among dead leaves, using their
long front claws to dig up beetle

The breeding season for the
striped skunk is February and
March. Males begin to range
widely at this time, often
leaving their own territories in
search of a mate.
During mating season, the
males are very excitable and
grubs, earthworms, roots,
and fungi. Skunks hunt by
scent, sniffing slowly and
carefully over the ground.
Striped skunks will also eat
nuts, fallen fruit, and the eggs
of ground-nesting birds.
spray large animals and
humans at random.
The female skunk carries
her young just over 2
months. Litter sizes range
from three to ten, although
the average number is four to
five. The young skunks, called
Right: The
striped skunk's
underside is
mainly dark,
but the white
stripe on its
back serves to
warn would-be
predators,
rather than
providing
camouflage.
Because of the
skunk's highly
offensive spray,
it fears few
other animals,
including man.
left: Skunks
can swim well,
but do so only
to save their
lives. They
never go
willingly into
the water.
kits, are born blind and without
fur. The female suckles the kits
for 6-8 weeks until they can
hunt for themselves. The young
stay with their mother, often
sharing a den with several
families until the end of winter
and the next mating season.
left: Baby
skunks in
Alberta,
Canada. They
begin explor-
ing early, but
they stay in the
family unit for
their first
GIRAFFE

... ORDER
"1IIIIIIII Artiodactyla
.. FAMILY
"1IIIIIIII Giraffidae
"" CARD 27

1:
Giraffa camelopardalis
(f)
o

[L
Q)
g
Q)
'0
(/)

co

u

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(/)
06
::r'

The giraffe is the world's tallest land mammal. Its long neck lets
it feed on vegetation that other herbivores cannot reach.
KEY FACTS
I SIZES
Height including horns: Male 15-
17ft. Female, 12-15 ft.
Weight: Male, 1,765-4,255 lb.
female, 1,215-2,600 Ibs.
BREEDING
Sexual maturity: Female, 4-5
years. Male, 3'/2 years.
Mating: Anytime.
Gestation: 453-464 days.
No. of young: Usually one calf.
LIFESTYLE
Habit: Loosely bound groups.
Lifespan: 5 years in the wild.
Diet: Leaves from trees, shrubs,
climbers, vines, and some herbs.
RELATED SPECIES
Nine subspecies recognized; all
similar but distinguished by coat
pattern and geographical distribu-
tion.
FEATURES OF THE GIRAFFE
Range of the giraffe.
DISTRIBUTION
Africa, south of the Sahara Desert, in open woodland and
wooded grassland.
CONSERVATION
Common in eastern and southern Africa; reduced in some
western parts of Africa by poachers, but not in immediate
danger. In Serengeti National Park, Tanzania, numbers are
increasing at over 5 percent per year.
When it drinks, the giraffe spreads its front legs far apart in order
to lower its head to the water. The giraffe has extremely elastic
blood vessels and special valves in the veins of its neck to
control the rush of blood to its head. Without this adaptation, the
increase in blood pressure would cause the giraffe to lose
consciousness.
MCMXCIIMP BV/IMP INC WILDLIFE FACT FILETM PRINTED IN U.S.A.
A giraffe's horns No two giraffB coat
(above) gradually patterns (below)
turn from gristle to are the same.
bone.
0160200021 PACKET 28
Like human fingerprints, the markings of a giraffe's
coat are unique to each individual. When
groups are gathered, the patterns
act as disruptive camouflage, confusing
potential predators. The giraffe's sharp vision
and towering height help it to anticipate
attack from predators.
~ HABITS
Giraffes are sociable by
nature. They live in groups
but do not form permanent
herds. Bulls (adult males) have
an identifiable pecking order,
which is established through
the ritual of neck wrestling. A
strange bull entering an area
will be challenged by the
dominant male. They will
proceed to butt heads (their
skulls are particularly strong)
until one of them retreats.
Right: Neck wrestling to deter-
mine dominance may turn into
rougher pushing and butting.
However, serious fighting is rare.
~ FOOD & HUNTING
The giraffe browses for its food, lower branches while the
which consists of the leaves male feeds from the higher
and shoots of trees and shrubs. branches. This behavior
Thorny acacia trees pose little
problem for the giraffe; the
giraffe picks off individual
shoots and bunches of leaves
from between the thorns with
its tongue, which can be up to
18 inches long. Plants without
thorns are stripped of their
leaves as the giraffe pulls the
whole length of smaller
~
branches through its teeth. I
~
The male and female feed ~
from different parts of a tree. ~
The female forages among the ~
ensures that the sexes do not
have to compete for the same
food within their range.
g ~
Q;
Cl
<{
c
0:
Q;
c
.5
-'"
c
a:
~ ~
OJ
0...
g.
E'
0...
Right: Newborn
calves are about
six feet ~ a l l . In two
and a half years,
their height
doubles.
Left: The giraffe
uses its long
tongue to grasp
leaves and then
pulls its head
away to tear them
from the tree.
~ BREEDING
When a giraffe cow (or
female) is ready to mate, she
attracts all the mature bulls in
the area. The dominant bull
wins her by driving off all the
other males.
The young are born fifteen
months later at a calving
ground where they remain for
the early part of their lives.
The same calving grounds are
used time after time by many
females. That way, when the
mothers go off to feed during
the day, the calves are left to
protect one another. Even so,
half of the calves die in the
first 6 months from attacks by
hyenas, leopards, and wild
dogs.
As the calf grows older, it
begins to roam with its
mother. Its main predator is
the lion. After calves are a
year old, their mortality rate
drops below 10 percent.
While the mother will mate
5 months after giving birth,
her calf is not weaned until it
is 15 months old. Young fe-
males stay in their mothers'
home ranges, but young
males wander away at about
3 years old.
DID YOU KNOW?
A giraffe's long neck has the
same number of vertebrae-
seven-as most other mam-
mals have. But the giraffes'
are greatly elongated.
A giraffe is one of the few
animals born with horns. A
baby giraffe's horns lie flat
against the skull when it is
born and pop upright during
the first week of life.
Giraffe cows feed for more
than half of every 24 hours;
bulls, for much less.
~ GIRAFFE & MAN
Many different African tribes
have traditions of hunting
giraffes for food. The bushmen
of Botswana hunt them on
foot, running up behind the
giraffes to cut the tendons of
their back legs before spearing
if) them to death. Tribes in Sudan,
o
~ Chad, and Ethiopia hunt them
on horseback.
QJ
o
(/)
Giraffes are also sometimes
~ killed for the hair in their tails;
~ the natives braid and use it to
i make bracelets to sell to
oj tourists. This practice has given
cI:l rise to poaching in some parts
_ ...... oo::...iioo:l ~ of Africa.
" CARD 28 1
EUROPEAN OTTER
ORDER
Carnivora
FAMILY
Mustelidae
GENUS &: SPECIES
Lutra lutra
-----
The European otter occupies a large territory within its habitat.
Once widespread, its numbers have declined drastically, and it is
now a rare sight throughout most of its range.
-0
o
--'
1:'
:;;;
j
KEY FACTS
SIZES
Length: 2-3 ft.
Height: 12 in.
Weight: 12-33 lb., males are heavier.
BREEDING
Sexual maturity: Males, 1 8 months;
females, 2 years.
Mating: Any time; females mate
12 months after birth of previous
litter.
Gestation: 61-74 days.
litter size: 1-6, average 2-3.
LIFESTYLE
Habit: Solitary.
Diet: Mainly fish.
Call: Whistles and snarls.
lifespan: 9-10 years.
RELATED SPECIES
There are 15 species of Lutra-
fish-eating river otters-found
worldwide. All are distinct from
the clawless otters, Anoyx and
Amblonyx, and the engaging sea
otter, Enhydra.
FEATURES OF THE OTTER
Range of the European otter.
DISTRIBUTION
Scattered populations exist in Europe, Scandinavia, most of
the Soviet Union, and North Africa.
CONSERVATION
Conservationists in Europe, particularly in Great Britain and
Scandinavia, are reestablishing wild populations by releasing
animals bred in captivity.
The otter's tapered body and tail give it a
streamlined shape, ideal for efficient
movement underwater.
As the otter dives, its ears and
nostrils close automatically, but its
eyes remain open, allowing it to locate
its prey by sight.
MCMXCI IMP BV/IMP INC WILDLIFE FACT FILETM PRINTED IN U.S.A us P 6001 12010 PACKET 10
Found in coastal and freshwater
habitats, the otter lives among rocky
outcrops by coasts and wherever trees and
bushes provide adequate cover along
the banks of rivers and canals. River pollution,
OTTER & MAN
The otter was once regarded as
a pest and was hunted for its
fur and for sport. Still, the otter
population remained stable for
many years. But in the 1950s it
decreased as a result of pest-
.g icides which polluted the
water. The poisons first af-
fected the fish in rivers and
canals, which were in turn
::: eaten by otters.
The otter population is
recovering in places where
hunting and pesticides have
been banned.
The major threat to otters
today is being run over on the
roads. Males patrolling
territories are particularly at
risk, as they will cross newly
built roads that run through
their range.
DID YOU KNOW?
The long, stiff guard hairs
of the otter's fur are coated
with oil that the otter pro-
duces, which makes them
water repellent. The hairs are
so effective that the animal's
skin never gets wet.
A newborn otter is bl ind
and naked and only 4 inches
long.
An otter can swim under-
hunting, and increased road traffic have 0
------------------------------------------------
all contributed to a rapid decline
"2
-------------o-f-t-h-e-o-t-te-r-p-o-p-u-,-a-u-o-n------------- i
------------------------------------------------ 2

The otter is a shy and soli-
tary animal and is mostly
nocturnal (active at night).
It hunts in swampy areas and
will often travel long dis-
tances over land, from one
river system to another, in
search of food .
FOOD & HUNTING
The otter mainly eats fish, but underwater by chasing them The otter breeds throughout
it prefers eels. Still, it usually or cornering them in clumps the year. There are generally
hunts for what is available and of weeds. After attacking a two or more females within a
easily caught. In addition, the fish, the otter grips it with its male's territory and the male
otter will eat crustaceans, sharp teeth and powerful will mate with all of them,
aquatic insects, birds, frogs, jaws. It then carries its catch staying with each female in
and young rabbits. Otters to dry land and eats it. her den. Two to three cubs
inhabiting coastal waters prey Unlike the adults, young are born in an underground
on crabs, dogfish, and other otters chase anything that burrow called a holt.
marine fish. moves, but they soon learn to The cubs are helpless for the
Remarkably agile in the become skillful underwater first six weeks, during which
water, the otter catches fish hunters. time they survive on their
water up to 1,300 feet
before surfacing to breathe.
An adult otter needs to
consume 20 percent of its
body weight in food every
day, which is equivalent to
5 pounds.
A single male otter re-
quires a territory of at least
10 miles of undisturbed
riverbank.
Left: A young
otter is taught
to swim by its
mother at 3
months of age,
but it is some
time before it is
able to hunt its
own food.
mother's milk. The male plays
no part in raising the cubs.
After nine months, the cubs
begin to spend short periods
away from their mother. The
cubsareindependentata
year old, though they may
stay in their mother's territory
for a few months longer.
Sadly, the European otter is
now a rare sight throughout
most of its range.
The otter is solitary be-
cause it wanders an ex-
tremely large territory. It
patrols its territory and
marks it at intervals with
droppings called spraint.
The spraint contains a scent
which acts as a signal to
other otters, preventing
them from wandering into
its territory.
------------------------------------,

NATUREWATCH
Female otters with cubs
will usually occupy a smaller
Above: The otter spends a great
deal of its time near water. Still,
it often spends a part of its day
playing away from the water,
near its burrow.
territory within that of the
male that is usually the cubs'
father.
Five-toed footprints in the mud
beside shallow rivers and river
mouths are an indication of t he
presence of otters.
Also, conspicuous mounds of
droppings, or spraint, deposit-
ed on rocks, stones, and tree
roots are signs that an otter
inhabits the area. Animal
remains such as fish scales or
jawbones are also evidence
that otters live nearby. ___________ .....J
Right: Otters
may mate at
any time in the
year. Two or
three cubs are
born in an
underground
burrow, or
holt.
"" CARD 29
SACRED BABOON


ORDER
Primates
FAMILY
Cercopithecidae
GENUS &: SPECIES
Papio hamadryas
The sacred baboon lives in large groups among the rocky hills of
northeastern Africa. The mature male grows to twice the size of the
female and sports a distinctive silvery mane.
KEY FACTS
SIZES
length: Head and body, 24-30 in.
Tail, 15-24 in.
Weight: Males, 40 lb. Females,
20 lb.
I;. BREEDING
Sexual maturity: Males: 7 years.
Females: 5 years.
Breeding season: Year-round.
Gestation: 1 70-1 73 days.
No. of young: Usually 1 .
I;. LIFESTYLE
Habit: Social, day-active.
Diet: Fruits, grasses, roots, lizards,
insects, occasionally small
mammals.
lifespan: Maximum in captivity:
37
1
/2 years.
RELATED SPECIES
The five other species in the
genus Papio include the olive
baboon P. cynocephalus, with
which P. hamadryas interbreeds.
Range of the sacred baboon.
DISTRIBUTION
Found chiefly throughout eastern Ethiopia, northern Somalia,
and on both sides of the Red Sea in Saudi Arabia, Yemen,
and South Yemen.
CONSERVATION
Although direct conflict with man and the loss of some
habitat has reduced its range somewhat, the sacred baboon
is still numerous and widespread.
BEHAVIORAL HABITS OF THE SACRED BA800
Parental care: The young stays with
its mother for up to
during which time it is -taught how,
anGi what, to eat.
MCMXCI IMP BV/ IMP INC WILDLIFE FACT FILETM PRINTED IN U.S.A. 0160200071 PACKET 7
The sacred baboon lives in an extremely complex
group divided into bands, where each male has a
harem. Within each band, there are recognized leaders
who make decisions about where to look for food
and how to deal with predators.
~ HABITAT
The sacred baboon inhabits
the rocky hill country of
Ethiopia. Baboons spend
more time on the ground
than any other type of mon-
key. Its limbs are specially
adapted to life on the
ground, and ~ c a n run
quickly on all fours. It does
not climb very well, but will
do so to reach fruit.
The sacred baboon spends
much of the day searching
for food . At noon it may seek
out a shady spot to rest.
DID YOU KNOW?
Adults nap or pick dirt from
each other's fur; the young
baboons wrestle and play.
At dusk, the baboon retreats
to its sleeping site located
high up on a steep cliff. Cliffs
with suitable ledges are fa-
vored resting places because
they provide some protection
from the baboon's main pre-
dator, the leopard. Suitable
ledges are not easy to find,
however; and each night as
many as 750 baboons may
gather together to sleep.
An old male baboon who other when moving through
has his harem stolen often thick vegetation.
loses his silver hai r and grows The male sacred baboon
brown fu r like the female. may occasionally mate with a
The sacred baboon's female olive baboon and
colorful, furless buttocks are produce fertile offspring. The
believed to help group male olive baboon, however,
members keep sight of each never mates with a female
~ BREEDING
The sacred baboon lives in a
male-dominated group, which
is exceptional among baboons.
Each group is divided into
small bands consisting of one
Left: Grooming and playing are
daily activities of the baboon
group.
~ FOOD &: FEEDING
Early each morning, the ba-
boon group breaks up into
small foraging parties which
climb down the cliffs and set
off in search of food. The
baboons must forage in small
groups because the land is
barren and food supplies are
scattered.
The sacred baboon feeds
sacred baboon because it
lacks the ability to attract her.
Sacred baboons will raid a
crop field in which women
are working, but will stay
clear of those in which men
are working, since they may
be armed.
male and one to ten females .
The male becomes sexually
mature at 7 years of age. But
before he can breed, he must
first establish a harem of
Below: The baboon prefers a
fruit-based diet, but eats grass if
nothing else is available.
mainly on fruit, which it picks
from bushes and trees with
the use of its relatively long
thumbs. When fruit is not
available, the baboon will eat
large quantities of grass,
which it tears up by the hand-
ful. During the dry season, the
baboon may also dig up the
tuberous roots of various
desert grasses and flowers.
The sacred baboon's long,
doglike jaws are packed with
large molars which it uses to
grind up tough and fibrous
vegetation. The baboon also
eats insects, lizards, snails, and
other small invertebrates, and
it will occasionally catch small
mammals such as young
females . Finding available
females is difficult because
every mature female in the
group already belongs to
another male who will fight
fie rcely to protect his harem.
So the young male will either
court an immature female or
try to steal females from the
male of another band.
If a male finds an available
young female, he teaches her
to follow him by walking
between her and her mother.
Eventually, the female will
begin to follow the male
instead of her mother. Once a
bond is formed between the
pair, the male will bite the
female's neck to maintain his
control over her. Once a male
has acquired a mate, their
bond is recognized by the
other males in the band.
Male band members will
gazelles and hares.
When searching for food,
the young baboon usually
stays close to its mother. It
learns from observation how
to find food, how it should be
broken apart or peeled, and
defend each other against
attacks from males of other
bands intent on stealing their
females .
Mating occurs throughout
the year, although in the drier
part of the baboon' s range,
most young are born after the
rainy season, when food is
more plentiful. The young
baboon is born with fur and
with its eyes open. It spends
the first few weeks of its life
clinging to its mother' s
breast. As it grows and
becomes more confident, it
will ride on her back.
The young sacred baboon
matures slowly, during which
time it usually remains within
the family group. Young are
weaned at 18 months, by
which time the mother will
either have new young or be
pregnant again.
which parts should be eaten.
The mother will prevent her
offspring from eating any-
thing potentially harmful.
Below: When they are not with
their parents, the young spend
their time wrestling or playing.
'" CARD 30
GIANT ANTEATER
______________________________ __ l :_M_A_M __

CLASS
Edentata
ORDER
Myrmecophagidae
FAMILY
Myrmecophaga tridactyla
The toothless giant anteater, found only in South America,
spends its day shuffling awkwardly along, sniffing the ground with
its long snout in search of ant nests.
KEY FACTS
SIZES
Body length: 40-48 in.
Tail length: 28-35 in.
Weight: 44-90 lb. Males slightly
heavier than females.
BREEDING
Sexual maturity: 2-3 years.
Mating season: March to May.
Gestation: 190 days.
No. of young: Usually 1 .
LIFESTYLE
Habit: Solitary; nocturnal near
towns, but a daytime feeder in
remote areas.
Diet: Ground-dwelling ants.
Lifespan: 26 years in captivity.
RELATED SPECIES
The Northern and Southern
tamanduas (T. mexicana, T.
tetradactyla), and the silky anteater
(Cye/opes didactylus).
Range of the giant anteater.
DISTRIBUTION
The giant anteater and the other three species of anteater live
only in Central and South America.
CONSERVATION
The giant anteater is the most vulnerable species of anteater
and is likely to become in danger of extinction in the next few
years, unless measures are taken now.
SPECIAL ADAPTATIONS OF THE GIANT ANTEATER
Tongue: Covered in tiny spines and housed in the
snout, it can be pushed 2 feet out of the mouth and
down into the ant nest. The spines point backward and
are covered in a sticky substance during feeding,
making escape for the ants impossible.
..
Claws: Each forepaw has five fingers. The second and
third fingers have very strong, sharp claws used for
protection or to dig into the ground for ants. The anteater
walks on its knuckles to protect its claws.
MCMXCIIMP BV/ IMP INC WILDLIFE FACT FILETM PRINTED IN U.S.A. 0160200021 PACKET 2a
The giant anteater is a solitary animal, spending
most of its day searching for its favorite meal of ants.
The largest of the four types of anteater,
it lives and feeds on the ground. Its smaller relatives
spend much of their time in trees.
~ HABITAT
The giant a n t ~ a t e r lives a
solitary life. It is rarely seen
with another anteater. When
two animals are together, it is
either for the purpose of
mating or it is a mother with
her young.
Its habitat includes the rain-
forests, grasslands, and mixed
forest and semiarid regions of
Central and South America. It
spends its day searching for
food with the help of its
exceptional sense of smell
and hearing. Its range is
usually about one-half square
mile. In areas where food is
less abundant, it could be
one mile.
At night, the giant anteater
will either scrape out a
hollow in the soil in which to
sleep or it will use the
existing burrow of another
animal. When it sleeps, it
curls its bushy tail, which is
almost as long as its body,
around itself to keep warm.
~ BREEDING
Little is known about t he
courtship and mating habits of
giant anteaters. It is believed
that males and females come
together only to mate. The
mother carries the young inside
her for 190 days. The mother
gives birth while standing and
will use her long tail like a third
leg for support.
At birth, the baby immedi-
ately scrambles onto its
mother's back. It has a com-
plete coat of fur that is so
similar in color to its mother' s
that the youngster is often
difficult to recognize when it is
with its mother. The mother
suckles her young for about six
months. During this time, the
baby will cling to its mother's
back, although it is able to walk
a month after birth.
~ FOOD &: HUNTING
The giant anteater's diet
consists mainly of ground-
dwelling ants, although it will
occasionally eat termites and
army ants. The anteater's
acute sense of smell detects
the ants. Its long claws are
used to get into the nests. It
catches the ants with its long,
sticky tongue. It gets most of
the moisture it needs from its
food, which includes fruit
and larvae.
The giant anteater is prey to
jaguars and other large cats,
although its coat of dense hair
gives it good camouflage. It
will use its long claws to
defend itself and with them it
can inflict serious wounds on
a predator.
Giant anteaters are usually
silent, but a youngster will
whistle shrilly when it is left
alone. The offspring is slow to
mature; it does not become
independent until the mother is
pregnant again and will not
feed on its own until it is two
years old.
Right and Below: Mating is one
of the few times that anteaters
DID YOU KNOW?
The giant anteater's sense of
smell is 40 times more power-
ful than man's.
The giant anteater is from
the order Edentata which
means "without teeth."
The body temperature of
t he giant anteater is only
Far left: Grass-
land is one of
the anteater's
varied habitats.
Left: Despite its
poor eyesight,
the anteater
can locate ants
with its sharp
sense of smell
and hearing.
32-35F, which enables it to
survive on the low caloric con-
tent of its food.
An earl y form of anteater
was known to have existed
some 20 mill ion years ago.
A giant anteater will sleep
up to 15 hours a day.