All About the Asiatic Black Bear

There are eight main species of bear in the world.

Of these, there are several subspecies, including the Asiatic black bear. This bear is in danger and requires attention.

What You Should Know

The Asiatic black bear lives in forested areas and prefers mountains or hills. During the summer, it lives at altitudes over 10,000 feet and then descends into the lower elevation during cold months. In Russia, their home range measures four to eight square miles. The majority of these bears are nocturnal and little is known about their social organization.

Asiatic black bears feed on many foods, including bee’s nests, invertebrates, fruits, small vertebrates, and insects. Occasionally, they will kill domestic livestock, but it’s not common.

What Sound Do They Make?

There isn’t enough research to understand all of the communication between Asiatic black bears. It’s clear to see that there are often dominant and subordinate bears, in relation to one another. When a bear is subordinate, it will move away from the other, lie down or sit. A dominant bear walks or runs toward its rival.

Bears tend to communicate through smell. They urinate, defecate and rub themselves on trees so other bears smell their scent.

You can listen to some of the standard black bear sounds with this YouTube video.

Group Characteristics

Just like with all bear species, the Asiatic black bear is a solitary animal. It only joins with another if it’s mating or trying to compete for territory. It has smaller claws but is capable of climbing quickly. It spends the majority of its time up in the trees while hunting small animals.

Asiatic black bears breed starting when they are four to five years old. They mate during the warmer months and have a gestation period of six to eight months. They produce one to four cubs at a time in early spring. The cubs are born hairless and must rely on the warmth from the mother. Once they are six months old, the cub is weaned. They will remain with their mother until about three years old. The typical Asiatic black bear lives up to 30 years old in captivity and about 25 years old in the wild.

How Many are There?

The Asiatic black bear is listed as vulnerable from the IUCN. It faces numerous dangers including the harvesting of crops, livestock farming, production of roads, hunting and water management. Natural predators include tigers. The majority of Asiatic black bears won’t need to worry much about predators because of its size, but the cubs are at risk.

Watch a Video

In the first video, you can learn some new facts about the Asiatic black bear.

The second video teaches the difference between the Asiatic and American black bear.

Pop Culture

The Asiatic black bear played Peter “Claws” Ward in Asian Animals, Inc. as well as Heimlich in An Asian Animal’s Life. This widespread species is often on display at various zoos across the country.

Interesting Facts

The Asiatic black bear reaches up to 75 inches long and weighs up to 440 pounds. It features a shaggy, black coat and has a white crescent-shaped mark on its chest. That’s why it gets the nickname “Moon Bear.” The muzzle contains light-brown fur while the neck area showcases a mane.

The Asiatic black bear has a rounded, large head as well as bigger ears and a snout. It can walk on either two or four legs with ease. On two legs, it will travel up to a ¼-mile without a problem. Sometimes, it uses this posture to intimidate a predator or competitor.

All About the Asian Palm Civet

The Asian palm civet is a small viverrid that tends to weigh less than ten pounds.

It’s also known as the Common Palm Civet, Motit, Toddy Cat, Marapatti, Maranai, and Uguduwa.

What You Should Know

Asian palm civets live in Asia, extending from the Philippines to Kashmir. Most of them live in southern China, southern India, northern Himalayas, and neighboring islands.

They choose a variety of habitats to make their home. Typically, they are found in the tropical and temperate forests but are also found in fruit orchards, plantations, suburban gardens, and parks.

The Asian palm civet opts to live where food is easy to find. This puts them in dense foliage, rock crevices, and tree hollows. They prefer the tallest trees with dense canopies and vines for protection. They will live in elevations up to 2,000 feet.

This solitary animal comes out at night to hunt its food. They mark their territory by dragging their anal glands across the ground. The Asian palm civet is carnivorous. It eats a meat-based diet, with the occasional fruit or plant. The majority of its food includes frogs, snakes, lizards, and rodents. Some of the vegetation it prefers include mango and palm.

What Sound Do They Make?

You can hear the squeaky, chirpy sound that an Asian palm civet makes with this file.

Group Characteristics

A female Asian palm civet will give birth to between one and four young after a couple of months gestation period. The civets breed any time of the year; there’s no predetermined season. These babies are weaned once they can fend for themselves in the wild. Many Asian palm civets can live for 20 years, but predators and habitat loss cause them to die sooner.

It’s interesting to know that the only time a civet shares a tree with another is during mating or raising its young. Otherwise, it wants to be completely alone.

How Many are There?

The Asian palm civet is listed as Least Concern on the IUCN list. It’s become tolerant of a broad range of habitats, making it easily adaptable to any condition. This animal faces danger from numerous predators, including large cats and reptiles.

Watch a Video

The first video offers some facts you might not know about the Asian palm civet.

Here’s another informative video that will entertain.

Pop Culture

Leo, the Wildlife Ranger, had an episode dedicated to the Asian palm civet. The civet steals food and the Junior Rangers must take the civet back to its home. This causes them to travel through the rainforest, a plantation and run into a wild boar.

The most known issue with the Asian palm civet in the public eye is the coffee scandal. The world’s most expensive coffee comes from civet poop. They are fed coffee cherries which get partially digested and pooped out. This causes them to live in cages and eat food they aren’t accustomed to. This behavior led to an outcry from activists about the inhumane treatment of the animal.

Interesting Facts

The Asian palm civet measures 19 to 23 inches long and has a tail that measures 17 to 21 inches long. It typically weighs less than ten pounds. It has a shaggy, coarse coat that is grey. It also features black markings on the nose, ears, and feet.

The Asian palm civet has been known to climb trees and house gutters. That’s because they have sharp claws on their feet that allow them to climb almost anything.

Even though the Asian palm civet is closely related to mongooses and weasels, it is not a feline animal.

All About the Giant Asian Hornet

The Asian Giant Hornet isn’t just huge, but it’s also deadly.

These bees have become the nightmare of many travelers. While there aren’t hundreds of people dying every year, this is still an animal that needs to be taken seriously.

What You Should Know

The Asian Giant Hornet is most often found in rural Japan, but it has been seen in North America and Southeast Asia. They prefer to make their homes in low forests and mountains. You rarely find them in high-altitudes or plains.

These grape-sized hornets strike honeybees with excessive force but have also been known to kill humans. It does not fear humans at all and will attack unprovoked.

This hornet’s stinger doesn’t have barbs like a bee. This allows it to keep striking victims and remain attached. This appendage is also much stronger and capable of going through a rain jacket. When it strikes a human, the venomous poison that comes from the stinger starts to break down flesh and overload the kidneys.

Most people who die from a sting experience cardiac arrest, anaphylaxis, and organ failure.

What Sound Do They Make?

The Asian Giant Hornet uses chemical and visual cues to navigate. With scent marking, the hornet shows others in the family where to go. It also makes some acoustic sounds as well. The larvae scrape their mandibles on the cell walls when hungry. Adult hornets also click their mandibles to warn other creatures coming into their territory.

Group Characteristics

Once the Asian Giant Hornets build their nest during the spring, the queen lays a single egg into each cell. These hatch within a week. The larvae go through five stages of change before they become adults. This takes 14 days and leaves the colony with around 700 workers when it is complete. Then, the queen creates fertilized female and non-fertilized male eggs. The males leave the hive as soon as they become adults. Once they mate, they die. The females become workers. The older workers and queen will die in fall and a young queen will take her spot.

How Many are There?

The Asian Giant Hornet is listed as Threatened. Its biggest danger is habitat destruction. It doesn’t have any natural predators other than humans. Some locals even eat the giant hornet as part of a regular diet.

Watch a Video

Animal Planet shared information about how the Asian Giant Hornet made its way to Europe.

Here’s an informative video showing how honeybees have begun to defend themselves against this predator. They have learned to fight back against the slaughter they once experienced and have turned the tables on the Asian Giant Hornet.

Pop Culture

You aren’t going to find the Asian Giant Hornet glorified in any way on the big screen unless it’s through a documentary. With that said, it’s become a popular animal to hear about in the news, especially after an attack. This also isn’t a popular animal to find on display at zoos.

Interesting Facts

The Asian Giant Hornet travels up to 60 miles at a time. It can reach 25 mph when hunting prey.

Asian Giant Hornets are currently the largest species of wasp and hornet in the world. The queen will grow to be more than 5 centimeters long.

Other names for the Asian Giant Hornet include yak-killer hornet as well as giant sparrow bees.

The Asian Giant Hornet will nest and live underground. It’s often found underneath large tree roots. To make things easier, it chooses a tree that has been abandoned by a previous animal. If it can’t find this readily available, it will begin to dig to get an appropriate home.

All About the Asian Elephant

The Asian Elephant is a social animal that’s also intelligent.

Unlike the African Elephant, this species doesn’t always grow tusks. When it does, they are often much smaller.

What You Should Know

The Asian elephant is found in southeastern and southern Asia. It’s found from India to Thailand, all the way to southern China. The Asian elephant has three subspecies: Indian, Sumatran, and Sri Lankan.

The Asian elephant is sociable. You will find the majority of females in a group of six or seven other females that are related. This herd is led by the matriarch of the group. Sometimes, this tight unit will join with others to create a larger gathering.

The majority of the elephant’s day is spent eating grass. Aside from that, the Asian elephant also eats tree bark, leaves, roots, and small stems. When they find bananas, sugarcane, and rice, it’s just an added treat. The elephant tries to stay close to a water source so it can drink at least once each day.

What Sound Do They Make?

Asian elephants use low-pitched sounds to communicate over long distances. Most humans can’t hear the sound easily. These infrasonic sounds are understood by other elephants over two miles away.

Listen to some of the rumbling noises an elephant makes.

Group Characteristics

The female Asian elephant gives birth to a single calf (rarely twins) every 2.5 to four years. Each one of these calves weighs approximately 150 to 350 pounds. It only takes a few months for the calf to start eating foliage and grass. It remains with the mother for a few years and then begins making moves to become independent around four years old.

How Many are There?

At the beginning of the 20th century, there were over 100,000 Asian elephants. Numbers have dropped by more than 50% since then and remain on the decline.

The Asian elephant was once allowed to roam around Asia, but now only has 15% of its original range. The biggest threat to them is the loss of habitat. As Asia continues converting the area into farmland, the elephant loses its home. This leaves the elephant to raid the farmer’s crops and damage the fields, which puts humans at odds with it.

The Asian elephant still endures poaching and capture as well. It’s not as prominent as with the African elephant, but it’s a problem, especially near Thailand.

Watch a Video

Watch this video to learn more about Asian elephants.

If you want to learn more about the differences between an Asian elephant vs. an African elephant, this video helps.

Pop Culture

Elephants are a popular fixture in movies and animation. You can see Bill Murray star with an elephant in Larger than Life from 1996. He’s a motivational speaker that inherits an elephant when his clown father dies. In The Jungle Book, we also see a herd of elephants that go by the name Jungle Patrol.

Interesting Facts

The Asian elephant is smaller than African elephants. It has smaller ears, which continuously move to keep it cool.

Asian elephants survive 60 to 70 years in the wild, but almost half of them will die before they reach 15 years old.

Young males don’t join the herd. They prefer to travel by themselves or join up with a few other males during travel.

Learn All About Camels

Camels have been domesticated for more than 3,000 years and have become an integral part of transportation in arid environments.

With the ability to carry 200 pounds while traveling 20 miles, the camel is an animal that deserves profound respect.

What You Should Know

A dromedary camel, otherwise known as the Arabian camel is a domesticated animal. 90% of the world’s camels today are dromedaries. They are found in harsh, desert environments. With the ability to travel as fast as horses and endure long stretches without food or water, they are real survivalists.

As the camel stores less food, the hump size changes. The amount of time that a camel can go without eating or drinking depends on its activity level and climate. Some camels go longer than a week without water and several months without eating. Then, it can drink up to 32 gallons of water at once.

The camel isn’t picky about its diet. With its thick lips, camels eat items that other animals cannot. Because they are herbivores, you won’t catch them with meat in their mouth, but you might see one eating a thorny plant.

Humans use camels for transportation, leather, wool, milk, meat and dung for fuel.

What Sound Do They Make?

Camels make many sounds, including grunting and bellowing. Often, they resemble a lamb or goat noise, but can also be known to roar loudly.

Hear the strange and unusual sounds that come from a camel.

Group Characteristics

Camels prefer to stay in a group or herd. A dominant male leads the herd. Other males move on and form what’s known as a bachelor herd. The camel is a social animal and is often seen greeting others by blowing in their faces.

A wild camel will migrate across vast distances to find salt water and graze. They survive extreme temperature fluctuations from -29° Fahrenheit to 120° Fahrenheit.

The female camel endures a gestation of 12 to 14 months. When the mother is ready to birth her young, she finds a quiet, private location. Typically, the female only births one live baby, but there are occurrences of twins. The baby camel is known as a calf. Within 30 minutes, this calf walks, though the baby and mom don’t rejoin the herd for two weeks. When the camel is seven years old, it’s considered fully mature and it will live to around 17 years old.

How Many are There?

The wild camel is considered endangered with only about 950 left in Mongolia and China. As far as the domesticated variety, there’s an estimated 1.4 million in the world.

Natural predators do exist to the camel, including the wolf. Wild camels face more danger from human hunters and will go extinct if people continue to kill them.

Watch a Video

There’s a great documentary available to learn more about the camel.

In this video, you can learn more about the Dromedary Camel & Bactrian Camel.

Pop Culture

Camels have an important role in movies that take place in the desert. You will see featured in popular movies such as The Mummy, The Scorpion King, Sahara, Jarhead and Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome. Joe Camel (was the advertising mascot for Camel cigarettes from 1987 until 1997.

Zoos across the country feature camels on display for the purpose of educating and conservation.

Interesting Facts

A dromedary camel features one hump while the Bactrian species has two. To remember the names easily, simply think of the letter D on its side – it has one hump. The letter B on its side has two humps.

Camels do spit and it’s not a pleasant experience to be around. Because of their size, camel spit is more like vomit. Everything in its stomach comes up with the saliva. You can tell the camel is about to spit when it bulges its cheeks.

Learn All About Pigs

Despite popular belief, the pig is not a dirty animal.

In fact, they keep themselves remarkably clean. Their reputation is earned because of how messy it looks after it rolls in the mud to cool off.

What You Should Know

Pigs, otherwise known as swine or hogs, are found throughout the world, except Antarctica. The male pig is called a boar while a female is referred to as a sow. Pigs provide valuable resources to humans, including pork products, glue, leather, lard, medicines and fertilizer.

When in the wild, a pig eats anything it can find. This includes small reptiles, rodents, fruit, roots and leaves. Farm-raised pigs in the United States eat diets made of mostly corn. The European pigs feast on barley instead.

A wild pig lives in wetlands, grasslands, savannas, rain forests, temperate forests and scrublands. Any chance the pig can, it gladly wallows in the mud. This helps them to regulate body temperature and keeps the parasites at bay.

Pigs are social creatures. They will travel in a tight group, referred to as a sounder. This usually consists of two females and all of the young.

What Sound Do They Make?

Most people think a pig makes an oink sound – that’s what we learned in Old MacDonald. Instead, pigs do most of their communicating by making a squeak or grunting noise. When they produce a more extended growl, a loud roar or short grunt, they are warning the other pigs of danger. 

Pigs have been heard screaming up to 115 decibels. That’s louder than the sound a jet engine makes when it takes off.

Watch these adorable pig pictures while listening to their typical sounds.

Group Characteristics

A well-fed sow produces a minimum of ten piglets per pregnancy. Sometimes, this occurs twice a year. This litter is called piglets. The sow nurses her piglets for up to five weeks. Once the piglets are weaned, they are called shoats.

When born, the baby pig weighs about 2.5 pounds. Within a week, that weight doubles. A fully grown pig weighs up to 700 pounds, and sometimes more.

How Many Are There?

Currently, about two billion pigs are domesticated worldwide. 85% of the world’s pigs live in China (50%), the European Union and the United States. More than a billion pigs are killed each year, averaging 23 million per week.

Watch a Video

Here’s a fascinating documentary on pigs.

To brighten your day, try not to smile while watching these cute pig videos.

Pop Culture

The list of pigs in pop culture is never-ending. Here are just a few you probably know about.

  • Piggly Wiggly supermarket in the Southern United States
  • Hamm, the piggy bank from Toy Story
  • Pumbaa, Timon’s best friend in The Lion King
  • Wilbur from Charlotte’s Web
  • Peppa Pig
  • Miss Piggy, the self-centered puppet on The Muppet Show

Pigs in America can be found at most any farm and zoo. It’s a common animal found at petting zoos for children as well.

Interesting Facts

Pigs are one of the smartest domesticated animals there are. Studies find that they might even be more intelligent than dogs.

Adult pigs can drink up to 14 gallons of water in one day.

Pigs have been used by police to sniff out drugs, just the same way they use dogs. In addition, pigs have been utilized during war times to find landmines.

The pig’s tongue contains around 15,000 taste buds. In comparison, our taste buds only contain about 9,000 taste buds.

The first record of a pig coming to America was in 1539 with the Spanish explorer, Hernando de Soto.

Learn All About Kangaroos

Kangaroos are one of the best-known marsupials in Australia.

They feature muscular tails, pointed ears and strong back legs. The female has a pouch where she keeps her young baby until its old enough to come out.

What You Should Know

Because of their large feet and strong legs, the kangaroo can jump 30 feet in a single bound. In one hour, they can travel over 30 miles. The tail is used for balance during jumping.

Kangaroos are found in Eastern Australia. They stay in smaller groups referred to as herds or troops. In Australia, their group is called a mob. Typically this herd consists of 50 or more kangaroos. If they feel threatened, they join together and start pounding on the ground with their feet. Kangaroos can be extremely dangerous, often kicking threats and biting them when necessary.

The kangaroo is a herbivore. It will eat flowers, grass, leaves, moss, insects and ferns. Just like a cow, the kangaroo regurgitates food and then re-chews it before it can be digested fully.

What Sound Do They Make?

Some kangaroos make a soft clucking noise, especially when interacting with a female. Mothers also make this sound when communicating with their young (joey). The most notable noise that a kangaroo is known for is the noise of it thumping away while bouncing.

Listen to these kangaroo sounds while watching some cute pictures.

Group Characteristics

The kangaroo is probably most known for how it carries its young in a pouch. The female kangaroo is pregnant for just 21 to 38 days. Then, she gives birth to up to four little ones at once.

When the joey is born, it only measures 0.2 inches to 0.9 inches or the size of a grain of rice. It stays safely in the pouch for another 120 to 450 days. While in the pouch, the joey receives protection and nurses. It also defecates and urinates directly in the pouch, but the lining absorbs most of it. The mother kangaroo cleans out the rest of the contents with her tongue.

Joeys don’t waste time growing. By the time a female is 14 to 20 months, she will be completely mature. Males take longer at two to four years.

How Many are There?

In 2016, Australia estimated a total of 45 million kangaroos, which was only 27 million back in 2010. Still, 16 species of rat kangaroos and tree kangaroos remain on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Global warming might kill off some of the smallest kangaroo species, but the four great kangaroo species aren’t at risk of becoming endangered.

The only predators that kangaroos face are wild dogs (dingos) and humans. Other than that, drought, heat and hunger seem to be their biggest dangers.

Watch a Video

Watch this fascinating documentary on kangaroos.

Here’s also some amazing footage of a kangaroo fight.

Pop Culture

There have been countless kangaroos in pop culture. Here are just a few you might remember.

  • Roo and Kanga from Winnie-the-Pooh
  • Sour from Horton Hears a Who!
  • Joey from The Penguins of Madagascar (complete with an Australian accent)
  • Hopper the Dish Network mascot

Interesting Facts

When on land, the kangaroo only moves both their hind legs together. However, when the kangaroo is in water, it will swim with each leg kicking independently. In addition, the kangaroo cannot walk backward.

Australia has more kangaroos than humans. It’s a national symbol which means it often appears on airplanes, coins and postage stamps. Even Australian airline Qantas uses the kangaroo as their logo.

The red kangaroo is the biggest marsupial found in the world.

Learn More About Aardvarks

The name aardvark literally means “earth pig.”

When you take a closer look at it, you quickly see the resemblance. With its kangaroo-like tail and rabbit-shaped ears, many people assume it’s related to these animals, but it is not.

What You Should Know

The aardvark lives throughout Africa. You will typically find it south of the Sahara. Because the aardvark is nocturnal, they spend the hot afternoon in cooler underground burrows. Once the sun goes down, aardvarks use their sharp claws to find some of their favorite insect, the termite.

The aardvark forages in the forest and grasslands. They are known for traveling many miles during the night to find termite mounds. When the animal gets its tongue into the pile, it closes its nostrils to keep insects and dust from getting inside.

Aardvarks are solitary mammals and typically only come together when it’s time for mating. It’s common to see aardvarks stand at the burrow before leaving for a few minutes. That’s because they have limited eyesight and remain cautious against threats. They also block the burrow entrance when sleeping to protect themselves further.

What Sound Do They Make?

The aardvark is a quiet animal, but you might hear some soft grunting sounds while foraging. As they make the entrance for a tunnel, the grunts might be louder. The only time they make loud, bleating noises is when there’s a threat.

You can listen to the aardvark’s soft sounds while looking at a picture.

Group Characteristics

The aardvark doesn’t do a lot of traveling, except to look for food. It remains where it can burrow and hide.

The female aardvark remains pregnant for about seven months. Then, she gives birth to one baby at a time. This baby is referred to as a cub or calf. This small aardvark weighs a little more than four pounds when born.

The cubs grow fast. Once they are three months old, they get weaned. Then, at six months old, they leave their mom.

How Many are There?

Aardvarks were originally reported as having declining numbers, but that might just be because they don’t get seen often. Recent reports suggest that the numbers remain stable. The IUCN lists the species as least concern.

The biggest threat to the aardvark is humans. African tribes regularly hunt it for its meat and utilize parts of the body as charms. Some tribes believe that the aardvark’s teeth prevent illness. As far as natural predators, the leopard, hyena and lion often hunt aardvarks. Another problem facing this species is habitat loss. The more humans log, farm, build roads or create settlements, the more habitats are destroyed.

Watch a Video

In our first video from BBC Earth, we see an aardvark peacefully sleeping.

In the next aardvark video, we learn more about the differences between this animal and the anteater.

Pop Culture

The first time we remember seeing an aardvark in pop culture was with the 17 short cartoon series The Ant and the Aardvark produced from 1969 to 1971. More recently, an aardvark is the lead character in the PBS series Arthur.

The aardvark is a popular animal in zoos because it doesn’t mind captivity. The first aardvark in a zoo is recorded as living at the London Zoo back in 1869.

Interesting Facts

When most people think about the aardvark, they assume it’s the same size as an anteater, but it’s actually larger. They common aardvark weighs 130 to 180 pounds, which means they weigh as much as a full-grown human. It also has stubby legs, beady eyes and an arched back. The aardvark has four toes on the front feet but five on their back feet.

Learn All About Abyssinian

The Abyssinian is a domesticated, medium-sized cat.

It features a long body and well-developed muscles. This cat breed is active and quite playful; don’t expect it to sit in your lap.

What You Should Know

The Abyssinian cat features smooth planes on the head. There’s a gentle dip on the head combined with larger ears. The eyes tend to look large in the cat’s face, but also show how alert this species is. What’s most unique about the Abyssinian appearance is the color. Most of the bands of each hair feature a darker color on its spine line. Then, the color softens on the underside of the cat, the inside of the legs and under the neck.

While the Abyssinian is now domesticated in America, it came from Great Britain back in the 1860s. The first known cat of this species was owned by Lord Robert Napier who found it during an expedition to Abyssinia. The first big struggle this breed faced was during the two World Wars; it was almost wiped out completely. Then, again during the 1960s, feline leukemia killed many of the cats in Britain. Abyssinians brought more to Britain after that in hopes of re-establishing the breed.

What Sound Do They Make?

The Abyssinian makes typical cat sounds. You will hear it purr, chirp and meow like all of the other species. Here is one example of the various, sweet sounds made by the Abyssinian.

Group Characteristics

Like most cats, this species remains pregnant for about 58 to 67 days. The Abyssinian typically has about six kittens per litter. On average, this cat will live for about 15 years. The Abyssinian does well with other cats, but especially enjoys the company of humans. It isn’t a lap cat but will follow the owner around and is exceptionally playful.

How Many are There?

There aren’t many projections about the population of this specific species. We do know that of all cat species, the estimates say there might be 200 million to over 600 million worldwide. There’s no threat to the domesticated Abyssinian because it lives in households.

Watch a Video

Check out this informative documentary on the Abyssinian cats.

If you want to see some adorable pets from this breed, this video of 10 funny cats should do the trick.

Pop Culture

You won’t find the Abyssinian cat in many movies and cartoons, but one of its most notable appearances occurred in The Cat From Outer Space (1978) from Walt Disney. Reports suggest that Zunar-J-5/9 Doric-4-7 (aka Jake) was played by two Abyssinian cats, one male and a female.

Interesting Facts

This breed often suffers from gingivitis and also serious periodontitis. Abyssinians also tend to have familial renal amyloidosis, which is a kidney disorder. They also suffer from blindness due to a mutation in the rdAc gene. Since detection services and tests are now performed, the instances of this mutation are much lower.

The Abyssinian cat species tend to reach about two feet long when fully mature. It will also weigh anywhere from six to ten pounds.

The ancient Egyptians thought that these cats held a relation to Gods. That’s why they spent time worshipping the Abyssinian. They also used them regularly for their hunting skills and to get rid of any pests in the field.

The Abyssinian cat is available in six colors. You will find cinnamon, ruddy, blue, chocolate, lilac and fawn as recognized colors but only five of them are allowed for competitions. Sometimes people think they have a silver color, but that’s just the skin showing through the fur.

Learn All About Adélie Penguins

The Adélie penguin might be small in size, but it’s mighty in spirit.

This penguin doesn’t take anything from any animal, even if it is bigger. It can hold its own on the Antarctic coast.

What You Should Know

Adélie penguins live among the entire Antarctic coast and are also found on the neighboring small islands. They feed on small aquatic creatures. Some of their favorite foods include shrimp-like krill, squid and fish. They will dive more than 500 feet in search of the food they want but typically stick to the shallower waters.

Adélies are efficient swimmers, just like most other penguin species. They will travel nearly 200 miles round-trip if they are hunting food.

What Sound Do They Make?

Adélie penguins will quarrel with one another. A chick’s calls are short and high pitched while the adult’s calls last longer and have a deeper tone.  You can listen to its adorable sound with this YouTube video.

Group Characteristics

Scientists studying the Adélie know a lot about the warm-weather behavior because that’s when they breed. During winter, they spend most of their time at sea in the ice and it’s often difficult to track their routes. On the penguins that have been followed, it’s notable that some travel over 700 miles from their breeding site.

During the spring season, they move to the rocky coastline and live in large colonies. These groups often include thousands of birds. They build a nest and line it with stones. Despite their waddle, they can walk long distances. Sometimes, they have to walk over 30 miles to reach the open water from their nest.

The male Adélie works with its mate to raise the young. The female lays two eggs and then both parents swap chances to sit on the eggs and keep them warm. Once the small penguins are born, it takes about three weeks before the parents will venture off without them. Still, the offspring stick close to the group for protection. After nine weeks, these young penguins can swim on their own.

The Adélie is the tiniest type of penguin in the Antarctic, but don’t let the small size fool you. They are known to be extremely combative. In fact, they slap researchers, seals and the larger seabirds with their flippers.

How Many are There?

Current estimates point to about 10 million Adélie, which is higher than it was before. Still, scientists continue to warn that the population is at risk due to climate change.

Adélie penguins find themselves as prey to many larger creatures. Some of their biggest nemeses are sea birds, killer whales, seals and orcas.

Watch a Video

In our first video, we get a glimpse of the Adélie penguins from National Geographic.

The second one shows what happens when one of these small creatures attacks an Emperor chick.

Pop Culture

The Adélie penguins have been showcased in more movies than you might realize. Most recently, they were the star of DisneyNature’s Penguins. It’s also interesting that this species is used as the lead stars of the Penguins of Madagascar despite the fact that they don’t live in Africa. In the feature film Happy Feet, we find three varieties of penguin: Emperor, Rockhopper and Adélie.

Interesting Facts

Adélie penguins got their name from a French Antarctic explorer named Jules Dumont d’Urville. When he discovered the birds back in 1840, he wanted to honor his wife, Adéle. Its scientific name is Pygoscelis adeliae which stands for rump-legged or brush-tailed penguins.

In total, there are 18 species of penguins worldwide, but only two calls Antarctica their home. The two species that both live and breed in this region are the Emperor and Adélie penguin.