Animal Facts

Fun Facts to Know About Animals

facts about animals

There are literally millions of different animals in our world today. They are broadly categorized into invertebrates and vertebrates. There are also sub-categories such as amphibians, mammals, birds, fish and reptiles. Some of these are cold blooded while others are warm blooded. Many animals fall into multiple categories at the same time. Their physical characteristics vary as well. Some animals are large and others are small in size. While some animals live for a long time, others only live briefly. Here is more about various categories and types of animals that you can get today.

Invertebrates and Vertebrates

Invertebrates don't have a spine. They are often small and rely on the contraction and expansion of lateral muscles for locomotion. Invertebrates include insects, slugs and worms. Some cold blooded animals fall into this category.

Vertebrates, on the other hand, have a spine. They often have a complex and fully functional skeletal system. Vertebrates include mammals, reptiles and birds. They are also often warm blooded.

Cold blooded vs warm blooded

Whether an animal is cold or warm blooded depends on its capability to maintain its own internal body temperature. There are animals that are not capable of regulating their body temperature. These are regarded as cold blooded. They rely on their environment to warm up or cool down their bodies. Such animals do not have sweat glands. Most invertebrates fall into this category.

Warm blooded animals are capable of regulating their own internal body temperature. This is done through a hydration system. They sweat to cool down their bodies. Furthermore, their fur or body hair rises so as to warm up their bodies. By using these systems, they are able to regulate how hot or cold they feel. Most vertebrates are in this category of animals.

Reptiles

These animals have a scaly skin. They are patterned and do not have sweat glands. Reptiles can shed off their skin. This gets rid of old scales and reveals a coat of younger, stronger scales. Reptiles are cold blooded animals. Therefore, they are unable to regulate their own internal body temperature. Reptiles live on land and can survive in water. They reproduce by laying eggs. These eggs are then incubated under a variety of different conditions until they hatch. Reptiles are incapable of providing mammary care for their young. As a result, the young are left to fend for themselves after birth. Examples of reptiles are snakes and lizards.

Birds

These are animals that are specially adapted for flight. Birds are winged creatures that can fly. They have a number of adaptations that make this possible. Firstly, they have hollow bones. This reduces their overall weight and makes flying possible. Birds are also covered in feathers. These are light and water resistant. They are also capable of holding air underneath their fibres. By doing so, feathers make it easier for birds to fly. Birds have unique characteristics such as beaks and a wide field of vision. Examples of birds are eagles, pigeons, hawks and pelicans. Birds reproduce by laying eggs. After they hatch, the birds take care of their young ones until they are mature enough to fend for themselves.

Mammals

Mammals are warm blooded animals. Their bodies are covered in fur or hair. The skin underneath has a sweat gland system. As such, they can effectively regulate their own internal body temperature. Mammals are vertebrates and have a complex skeletal system which features a spine and multiple limbs. Mammals live on land but can survive in the water as well. They reproduce by giving birth through internal or external fertilization. Mammals take care of their young after birth by providing mammary care. After that, they wean their young to other types of sustenance and provide supervision until their young ones are old enough to fend for themselves. Examples of mammals include bears, dogs, cats, humans, cows and monkeys.

Fish

Fish are vertebrates that live in the seas, oceans and river systems of the world. Their bodies are covered in scales. They are cold blooded and use the different water temperatures to regulate their internal conditions. Fish reproduce by laying eggs. Some take care of their young while others do not. Examples of fish are sharks, tuna and trout.

Amphibians

Amphibians are moist, soft-bodied animals. They are usually small in size. Their skin is characterized by a moist coating. They are vertebrates and cold blooded. This means that they have spines and skeletal systems but cannot regulate their internal temperatures. Amphibians can live on land or in water. They reproduce by laying eggs. After the young ones hatch, some amphibians take care of them while others do not. Examples of amphibians are frogs, salamanders and newts.

Animal superlatives

The biggest mammals in the world are elephants. They live in the savanna and forests of Africa and Asia. The largest reptiles are the anaconda snakes of the Amazon in Brazil. The largest amphibians are the giant salamanders of China. They can grow up to 2 meters in length. The biggest birds are ostriches while the largest insects are the giant centipedes of Vietnam.

There are many different types of animals in the world. They all contribute to the global ecosystem. It is important to take care of animals so as to maintain the natural balance of the circle of life.