Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Fat tail Scorpion - world's most dangerous Scorpion

Fat tail Scorpion - world's most dangerous Scorpion

Fat tail scorpion is one of the world's most dangerous species. The venom from the Yellow Fat tail Scorpion is strong enough to kill an adult man within two hours, and there is no anti-venom available. They are fairly small with an full grown size of about 4 inches.

 The females are bigger than the males. The tail on this Scorpion is very fat and that is where the name comes from. Africa is the main location for this species of Scorpion. They are very wide spread around the Middle East as well.

 They are found in areas of Algeria, Egypt, India, and Turkey. They prefer the dry areas that get very warm. They will stay in the cool areas though to avoid the sunlight which can make them very sensitive. 

The fat tail scorpion species is known to inhabit brick homes and those with crawlspaces. They can be very hard to eradicate too due to the fact that they don’t seem to be bothered by pesticides.

Ostrich - largest bird in the world

Ostrich - largest  bird in the world

The Ostrich is the largest bird in the world, typically weighing 63.5-131.5 kg and measuring 6– 9 ft in height. Ostriches can run at maximum speeds of about 97.5 km/h (60.6 mph), making it both the fastest bird on land and the fastest two-legged animal in the world. Ostrich eggs are the largest of all bird eggs and on average they are 5.9 inch long and 5.1 inch wide, and weigh 1.4 kg. 

The Ostrich has just two toes on each foot, with the nail on the larger, inner toe resembling a hoof. The outer toe has no nail, and the reduced number of toes is an adaptation that appears to aid in running. 

Ostrich wings reach a span of 7 ft and are used in mating displays and to shade chicks. Ostriches mainly feed on seeds, shrubs, grass, fruit and flowers. The Ostrich are  reared  for its feathers, which are decorative and are also used as feather dusters. Its skin is used for leather products and it is claimed that

Ostriches produce some of the strongest commercial leather. Its meat is marketed commercially with a taste similar to lean beef and is low in fat and cholesterol and high in calcium, protein and iron.

Saturday, 28 March 2015

Owls - Awesome Facts

Owls - Awesome Facts

Owls are a diverse group of birds, with over 220 species of owls belonging to the order Strigiformes. Owls feed on a wide variety of prey including mammals, other birds, insects and reptiles. Owls cannot chew their prey since, like all birds, they do not have teeth. 

Owl swallow small prey whole and must tear larger prey into smaller pieces before swallowing. The structure of an owl’s foot is referred to as zygodactyls. The two of the toes forward while two face backward, this enables the owls to capture and grasp prey with greater ease. Most owls are nocturnal i.e. they are active at night. 

Owl’s eyes are fixed in their sockets. Owl’s are unable to move their eyes within their sockets to a great extent, which means they must turn their entire head to see in a different direction. Many species of owls have special flight feathers adapted for silent flight. 

Owls create a variety of sound or vocalizations. Owls are farsighted and are unable to see anything clearly within a few centimeters of their eyes. 

Caught prey can be felt by owls with the use of filoplumes, which are small hair-like feathers on the beak and feet that act as “ feelers”. Their far vision, particularly in low light, is exceptionally good.

Friday, 27 March 2015

Komodo Dragon – Largest living lizards in the world

Komodo Dragon – Largest living lizards in the world

Komodo dragons are the largest living lizards in the world. They are identified by their massive size, flat heads, bowed legs and long, thick tails. The average size of a male Komodo dragon is 8 to 9 feet and about 200 lbs. Females grow to 6 feet (1.8 m). Komodos come in a variety of colors, including blue, orange, green and gray. 

Their skin is rough and durable, reinforced with bony plates called osteoderms. They have long claws and a large, muscular tail. Komodos have good vision; they can see objects as far away as 985 feet (300 m), according to the Smithsonian Zoo. They are also speedy. They can run briefly up to 13 mph (20 kph) but prefer to hunt by stealth — waiting for hours until prey cross their path.

 Their sense of smell is their primary food detector, however. Komodo dragons, like snakes, use their forked tongues to sample the air, and then touch the tongue to the roof of their mouth, where special organs analyze the airborne molecules. If the left tongue tip has more concentrated "smell," the dragon knows that their prey is approaching from the left. Komodos have dual-purpose homes. 

To stay warm at night, they make or find burrows to nestle down in. During the day the same burrow keeps them cool. Komodo dragons are carnivores, meaning they eat meat. They are such fierce hunters they can eat very large prey, such as large water buffalo, deer, carrion, pigs and even humans. They will also eat smaller dragons.

 They can eat 80 percent of their body weight in one feeding. Komodo dragons can reproduce through both sexual and asexual reproduction.

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Birds sing so early in the morning ?

Birds sing so early in the morning ?

Singing is an essential part of bird life, but it’s costly in terms of time and energy, the atmospheric conditions in the early morning i.e. typically cooler and drier than later in the day, might allow bird song to travel further through the air. Individual males have their own signature songs, with slight variations that identify them to their neighbors.

 If you’re a male trying to attract a mate or defend your territory, it’s more important to let your fellow birds know that it’s you singing than it is to be heard over a long distance. Most birds do their singing in the early morning, and in most species the male is the vocalist . 

The dawn is the best time for song travel because there is less heat and wind to interfere with acoustics. The singing in the morning leads to a more consistent signal to other male birds, and the earlier the better. Mostly males singing, because they typically take the lead in defending territories and attracting mates. 

However, especially in the tropics, some species sing duets involving both the male and female. Many birds sing especially energetically at dawn. 

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

White House Sparrow : one in – a- million

White House Sparrow  : one in – a- million

White house sparrow is dressed from top to tail in snowy white, a stunning contrast to the drab plumage of the rest of the flock. White House Sparrow is a  very special sparrow. 

This albino bird has been accepted by the rest of the flock but some are rejected by their fellow sparrows. The white sparrow – which remains a rarity in the world.

Friday, 20 March 2015

Myna – urban adopted bird

Myna – urban adopted bird

The Myna ,  crested myna, house myna, house mynah, Indian myna, Indian mynah are common names of myna. The common myna has adapted well to the urban environment, making it one of the most abundant and familiar birds in Asia and is an aggressive and confident bird. This well-known bird has distinctive chestnut-brown upper parts, with a glossy black head, brownish-black upper-wings and a white-tipped black tail . 

The bill, legs and the bare skin around the eyes are bright yellow, and bristly feathers on the forehead form a short crown . This large, stocky myna also has contrasting white patches on its wings, which are most visible when the bird is in flight . The male and female common myna are very similar in appearance, although the male is usually slightly larger, but the juvenile bird is duller than the adult, with browner plumage, and lacks the glossy sheen on the head . 

Like other birds of the Sturnidae family, the common myna has large and strong feet that allow it to walk on the ground rather than hop, while the stout, straight bill enables it to be fairly flexible in its food choice. The common myna is highly vocal at all times, and can also be identified by its ceaseless, loud chattering of various conversational-like gurgles and whistles, and it is even capable of learning to mimic human speech when in captivity .  

The common myna consumes a wide variety of food types, including frogs, snails, birds’ eggs and nestlings and other animal matter, as well as fruits and seeds. Typically, it scavenges on the ground at refuse heaps in urban areas, and in rural areas it is often found following ploughs to feed on upturned insects. It also regularly settles on the back of cattle to remove ticks from them.

During periods when insects are scarce, fruits and seeds make up most of its diet, and at such times the species can become a serious agricultural pest. As a highly sociable species, the common myna often feeds in small flocks, as well as gathering into large roosts that sometimes comprise tens of thousands of birds .

 The timing of breeding in the common myna varies greatly across its range, but the breeding season generally runs from April to July in India . Pairs form at the start of each season and usually mate for life, with a small territory around the favoured nesting site defended each year . 

The male and female cooperate to build an untidy cup-shaped nest out of twigs, grass, leaves and refuse in a cavity of a tree or building, or in a hole in an earthen bank or cliff. Usually 4 to 5 eggs are laid and incubated, mostly by the female, for 13 to 18 days. The chicks fledge after around 22 to 27 days in the nest, but continue to be fed by the adult birds for up to a further 3 weeks. 

The young birds reach sexual maturity at a year of age, with an average life expectancy of around 4 years in the wild, although some individuals may reach 12 years of age .