10 Weird Animals You Won’t Believe Are Real
It’s hard to believe these odd-looking critters actually evolved to look this way. Here, the new book WTF, Evolution?! critiques some of Earth’s wackiest creatures in these weird animal photos.
Photo © K Jayaram/Science Source
Really, evolution? You’ve had 130 million years to work on the pignose frog, and this is the best you could do? Did you maybe boil it too long?
FYI: The pignose frog spends most of its life burrowed underground, emerging for only a few weeks every year to breed. Hey, there’s someone for everyone.
Next up, check out these 12 animal myths that you’ve probably believed before.
Striped leaf nosed bat
Photo © Ivan Kuzmin/age footstock
Evolution accidentally dropped this bat on the floor but was too embarrassed to say anything so just pretended it was actually supposed to look like that.
FYI: Leaf-nosed bats’ nasal folds act like megaphones to amplify the high-frequency sounds they use to hunt. Their giant ears make excellent receivers—but they’re pretty embarrassing on school picture day.
And did you know that bats are actually extremely intelligent? Read up on these 8 animals that are smarter than you.
Photo © Mark Conlin/Getty Images
Clearly, Evolution meant the red-lipped batfish to be a work of satire, not meant to be taken as a literal “animal,” which would of course be ridiculous.
FYI: Beneath the batfish’s noselike protuberance dangles a small, retractable lure. Scientists aren’t sure exactly how the fish uses the lure—nor have they had the heart to tell them how silly it looks. If you think these animals are bizarre, prepare to be grossed out by these slimy animals that will make your skin crawl.
Photo © Danita Delimont/Alamy
Why so gloomy, babirusa? Is it because Evolution gave you some weird extra tusks that are useless, too brittle to fight with, and may eventually grow so long that they curve around and fatally puncture your skull? Could that be it?
FYI: A babirusa’s tusks start out growing inside its mouth, then pierce through the skin of its face and just keep going. Talk about a nightmare of orthodontia.
Photo © Juniors Bildarchiv/age fotostock
Hey, Evolution, I know that beards are in and all, but I think you may have put this pig’s on backward. Or upside down. Or inside out? Possibly all three.
FYI: Bearded pigs use their scruff to dig around for roots, fungus, and bugs to eat. They also snarf down plants, small birds, and the occasional orangutan carcass. (It’s a pain getting the gristle out of your beard, though.) For more chuckles, steal a line or two from these animal jokes that will have everyone in your office howling. *No pun intended.*
Photo © Johner Images/Getty Images
Hey, Evolution, do you think maybe you forgot something here? LIke, I don’t know, the entire back half of the fish?
FYI: From above the water, sunfish have occasionally been mistaken for disembodied swimming dolphin heads.
Photo © Jonathan Bird/Getty Images
Dark thoughts keep Evolution awake some nights. It tosses and turns, tormented by visions of twisted creatures. To feel normal, Evolution tries to bury these demons. The darn things keep poking their heads out, though.
FYI: Dangly lures inside stargazers’ mouths attract critters for these bottom-dwellers to snack on. They may also eat souls, although biologists have yet to confirm this. Did you know that there’s a difference between a poisonous animal and a venomous one? Check out these animal distinctions we bet you never knew.
Okay, we’ll hand it to you (all puns intended), Evolution, this one is pretty clever, and it’s probably one of our favorite weird animal photos. One thing we’re still unsure of: does this mole even have eyes to see these weird animal photos?
FYI: Star-nosed moles are actually great swimmers because of their front claws, and they were the first mammal that was proven to be able to smell underwater.
Evolution, I just have a few questions. And they all have to do with why this fish looks oddly like my Grandpa Tom. Also, who was so lazy that they decided on ‘blobfish’? Honestly, I could write an entire book of questions, but for now, I’ll just admire the laziness of the blobfish, who doesn’t work for food and rather just inhales whatever floats by that looks generally edible (yes––that’s true).
FYI: You won’t find a blobfish at the Jersey Shore. Blobfish are typically found 2000 to 4000 feet beneath the ocean’s surface, where the water pressure is 120 times the normal amount you feel!
Something like a nocturnal koala-tarsier combo, the aye-aye has to be the strangest primate you thought up, Evolution. Not sure why you gave it sparse, wirey hairs when you had a great opportunity to make it cute, but we’ll just assume that every part of the aye-aye plays a role in its adaptation to its environment. Now, off to find more weird animal photos! Check out these 6 other nocturnal animals that are rarely seen by humans next.
FYI: The aye-aye uses echolocation––the process of locating something by producing sounds and then listening to their ––and it’s the only primate with that ability. Other animals you might know that use echolocation are bats and whales.
See More Fascinatingly Creepy Creatures
Intrigued by the incredible—and often inexplicable—forms of life on our Earth, science writer Mara Grunbaum began showcasing her favorite examples on Tumblr. Now you can marvel at more than 100 of Evolution’s greatest hits and misses in her new book WTF, Evolution?!: A Theory of Unintelligible Design (Workman). Take a break from these strange creatures and check out the most adorable photos of the sweetest animals.