Kangaroo, koala, kingfisher and killer whale are some of the more popular animals whose names start with the letter K. However, there are a dozen more names, one can include to the list. Below is a compilation of 10 more intriguing “K” animals.
The Kiskadee is a small passerine bird of the flycatcher widespread in Texas and South America. It lives in thickets, forest edges, orchards, open woodland and parks. Kiskadee is so small, that adult Great Kiskadee averages below 22 cm (9 in) long and weighs 63 g (2.2 Oz). Kiskadee has black head with yellow crown stripe, white eye stripe and a short black bill. Its upperparts, wings and tails are brown. Kiskadee is omnivorous; its diet consists of slurping insects like grasshoppers, moths, wasp and beetles. At times it also eats fish, frogs, lizards, mice as well as berries and seeds.
The Kagu (Rhynochetos jubatus),is a flightless bird, forest-dwelling bird endemic to New Caledonia. The size of a chicken (about 55 cm) long, this crested bird has a bluish-gray plumage, orange bill and bright red legs. One distinct feature of Kagu is its ‘nasal corns’, a unique structure covering its nostrils. Kagu’s good eye vision and the ability to stand still on the ground aid this carnivorous bird to catch prey. Its diet includes snails, annelid worms, centipedes, lizards, spiders, grasshoppers beetles and bugs. Kagus are monogamous breeders, building its nest on the ground and laying a single egg. Due to habitat loss and hunting, the Kagu is now a threatened bird species with about 250-1000 birds sighted in the wild.
The Kinkajou (Potos flavus), or the honey bear, is a small arboreal and nocturnal mammal native to Central America and South America. The kinkajou is a medium-sized animal, about 42-57cm in body length and weighs up to 2.72kg. It has short, soft brown fur. It has a long body and tail, a rounded head with prominent eyes, sharp teeth, and long stretchable tongue. The kinkajou’s prehensile tail is used for balance while its elongated tongue is used for getting nectar from flowers. The Kinkajou’s diet includes fruits, nectar, leaves and flowers. Studies showed that it also eats bees, honey, bird’s eggs, and tree-living frogs.
Kookaburras are large kingfisher inhabiting forest lands of Australia and New Guinea. Kookaburras average 47 cm long and about 0.5 kg in weight. They have a small but stout body, short neck, black bill and short legs. The upperparts plumage is dark brown while the belly is white. A carnivorous bird, Kookaburras feed on insects, mice, lizards, snakes and other small birds. Kookaburras are best known for their rolling, laughing call. In the wild, Kookaburras can live up to 20 years.
Katydids also known as long-horned grasshoppers, belong to the family Tettigoniidae that contains more than 6,400 species. Around 255 species are found in North America, the rest inhabiting the tropical regions of the world. They live in forests, thickets, and fields. Unlike grasshoppers, katydids have longer antennae, bigger about two inches long, leaf-green in color and have oval-shaped wings. Also, both male and female katydids make sounds. Katydids eat leaves, flowers, bark, and seeds of trees and shrubs.
The word “Koi” is the Japanese name for carp that includes both the colored varieties and the dull-gray ones. The koi being referred in English is ‘Nishikigoi’ in Japan, literally “brocaded carp”. These ‘Nishikigoi’ are hardy, attractive, and domesticated cold-water fish. Koi come in various color patterns such as white, yellow, red, cream, blue and black. An omnivorous fish, Koi feed on different food types including peas, lettuce, and watermelon. Koi can live for centuries and like most fish, they reproduce through spawning.
Krill or euphausiids, are shrimp-like marine crustaceans swarming in all oceans of the world. These pink, translucent invertebrate has a hard exoskeleton consisting of the Cephalon (head), the thorax, and the abdomen. Krill has a pair of antennae and several pairs of thoracic legs. They are about 6 cm long and weigh about 1 g. A known herbivore, krill diet includes phytoplankton and single-celled plants. They in turn are the main staple food of marine animals. Krill can live in the wild for 5 years or more.
Kouprey (Bos sauveli), is a wild ungulate found in Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and Thailand. It lives in open rolling hills, dry denser monsoon forest. The adult males grow to about 2 m in height and average 900 kg in weight. Kouprey has a large body with a hump on the back and hanging loose skin in the neck. It has long horns, long legs, wide nose and short ears. Males are black while females are gray. Kouprey is diurnal and its main diet is grass. According to the 2008 IUCN report, the kouprey is critically endangered. Kouprey’s population in the wild is estimated to be around 250 individuals. The declining number is due mainly to uncontrolled hunting and loss of habitat.
The Kakapo (Strigops habroptila), is a large, flightless parrot native only to New Zealand. The only nocturnal parrot and the world’s heaviest parrot, with adult males growing up to 60 centimeters tall and weigh around 2 and 4 kilograms. The Kakapo’s upperparts has yellowish moss-green plumage with black or brownish grey spots. The face, neck and belly are mostly yellowish, with pale green or brownish-grey spots. It has large brown eyes, large grey beak, large feet, short legs and short wings. Kakapo’s are herbivores, with its diet consisting mainly of fruits, leaves, stems, roots and seeds of many local plants. The Kakapo is critically endangered; with only 122 individuals recorded as of February 2010.
Kudu are African antelope with two known species: the Lesser Kudu (Tragelaphus imberbis) and the Greater Kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros). The Greater Kudu inhabits woodlands, dry riverbeds and bush lands while Lesser kudus lives arid savannahs. Known for the spiral horns among adult males, these antelope grow between 100-140 cm tall and weigh 250 kg. Kudu are typically fawn-grey, with narrow, vertical white stripes along the sides. Adult males sport brown and white fringe from the mid-throat down to the tip of the neck. Kudu feed on grass, roots, leaves, grass and at times fruits and tubers. In the wild, kudu can live 7 to 8 years and up to 23 years in captivity