The creatures of the animal kingdom can live underwater, fly, spit venom and change their colors and sizes, among other things. Their world is so fascinating and versatile that it would be hard to imagine them being more interesting than they already are. But, aside from being fascinating, animals are also very important for all life on Earth.
We love our pets, but there is so much more to the animal world than dogs and cats, although those two species are utterly important as well. Animals that live in the wilderness are keeping our ecosystem healthy, and yet we often don’t even know what they are called.
Each life form plays a very important role in the ecological balance of our planet. Carnivores are nature’s way of controlling the population of herbivores in grasslands or forests. If there were no carnivores, herbivores would grow their populations so big that they would wipe out the forests and grasslands to feed themselves. Scavengers are here to clean all the decaying carcasses that would otherwise fall prey to various microorganisms.
We share the planet with millions of animals that have numerous outstanding characteristics. If you are looking for unusual creatures with mad superpowers you should look no further than your local forest, lake or mountain. Now let's have some fun!
The Gila monster has a horrible reputation in local folklore. These bright-colored lizards have a very strong bite, and while their venom is poisonous, it rarely causes death in humans.
Gray wolves used to be common across all of North America, but by the mid-'30s they were exterminated in most areas of the United States. Now you can find them in Alaska, Canada, northern Rockies, Pacific Northwest and the Great Lakes.
The South American rattlesnake is one of the most dangerous species of its kind. Their venom attacks more strongly and profoundly than that of other rattlesnakes. It is the only rattlesnake found in Central and South America.
The striped skunk is only found in North America and nowhere else in the world. One of the most notable characteristics of skunks is their defense mechanism that includes spraying the attacker with a smelly fluid. If sprayed in the eyes directly, it may cause pain and temporary blindness.
The ocelot’s unique spotted coat is perfect for stalking through the grass of Mexican forests. Countless hunters have been targeting them because of their beautiful fur, which is why ocelots are very rare in some areas.
Larger than most dogs but smaller than wolves, coyotes are ruthless opportunists with a dangerous streak. They can eat pretty much anything, including bones and rotten meat.
Wolverines are polygamous, and males usually form long relationships with a couple of females. They are famous for their fearlessness and tales of their ferocity are legendary.
The largest elk population in the world lives in Colorado. They are very social animals who live in same-sex herds that consist of 10 to 20 elk.
Moose are the largest members of their deer family. The most impressive moose specimens can be found in Alaska and Siberia: bulls over there weigh 1,300 pounds and stand 7 feet tall.
American Bison is the official name for this mammal, and while it is the correct term for this species, they are often called buffalo. Technically, a buffalo is a different animal, native to Africa and Asia only.
The Canada lynx is one of the four members of the lynx family. They are skilled hunters with amazing hearing and sharp eyesight.
Grizzly bears are very powerful predators, they are right at the top of the food chain, and yet their favorite food consists of berries, root, fruit and roots. However, they also eat other animals, from mice to moose.
Scientists say the American alligator is more than 150 million years old. This animal managed to escape extinction 65 million years ago when the dinosaurs died off.
A cougar cannot roar as other big cats do, but it can purr just like a house cat. They also have similar bodies to house cats, only on a much larger scale.
Northern flickers don’t act like your everyday bird. They spend most of the time on the ground even though they can fly perfectly fine just as most birds do.
Ringtail cats are not related to cats. They are a part of the raccoon family. The name “Ringtail” comes from the ring markings on the animal’s tail.
The northern mockingbird is very territorial, despite its size. It attacks intruders that dare to come close to its territory. Sometimes it may even attack its own reflection!
Beavers are famous for their danger signal. When scared, the beaver will dive while slapping the water with his large tail, creating a loud noise.
Bighorn sheep are very muscular and can weigh from 100 to 320 pounds. During the summer, these amazing creatures can be found in the high portions of the Rocky Mountains.
Jaguars are the third largest cats in the world and the largest cat that lives in South America. Their black spots are called “rosettes” because they look like roses.
Florida panther cubs have blue eyes and a spotted coat. It helps them camouflage from potential predators. They lose their spots as they grow older.
While most seals prefer to live in colder areas, the Hawaiian monk seals love the warm, sandy beaches of the Hawaiian Islands. They are a rare tropical exception in the seal family.
The gorgeous Appaloosa was almost extinct once upon a time. Now they belong to one of the most numerous horse breeds in the country.
Male cardinals like to take care of their partners. When a female cardinal sings from its nest, it’s usually a sign to the male that she needs food.
Adult tiger salamanders spend most of their time underground. However, they live in burrows created by other animals because they aren’t good at burrowing.
The Eastern goldfinch sheds all of its feathers twice a year. It is the only member of the finch family that does this.
Gray squirrels are very sneaky when they’re hiding their nuts. Sometimes they even pretend to hide them if they think someone is watching.
The eastern brown pelican is the only pelican in the world that’s not white. It weighs only four pounds but has a four-foot-long body.
Maine coons are one of the biggest cats in the world. They aren’t considered fully grown until they are five years old.
Robins have a very versatile diet. They eat different kinds of food depending on the time of the day: earthworms for breakfast and fruit for lunch and dinner.
White-tailed deer change the color of their fur during the year, depending on the season and their location. Usually, they have reddish-brown fur in summer and grayish fur in winter.
Only the male purple finches have the beautiful reddish-purple color. During their first year, males look more like females. They don’t get their pretty colors until they are all grown.
Roadrunners don’t fly because they can’t be in the air for very long. They only fly when they have to escape predators, and they can stay in the air for only several seconds at a time.
There are 12 subspecies of the bobcat. At one moment their territory was spread all over the United States, but their numbers have decreased over the years.
Groundhogs belong to the squirrel family. They are the largest ones in the family, and they live only in woodland areas of the United States and Canada.
The musk ox is a prehistoric animal that has survived the Pleistocene extinction. They are very rare, and they live in remote parts of Alaska rarely visited by humans.
Kodiak bears are the largest bears in the whole world. A grown male can weigh up to 1,500 pounds and stand over 10 feet tall when standing on his back legs.
When you provoke a coral snake, it will make a popping sound by expelling air from its urinary opening. These so-called “microfarts” only happen when the animal feels endangered.
The least weasel is a tiny, mouse-sized animal with a long, slender body. However, it is a fierce predator regardless of its size.
The bald eagle is the national bird of the United States. It’s the only type of eagle solely native to North America.