When we talk about fashion it comes to keeping up appearances. Fashion gurus have their DO’s and DON’Ts, and the same observations apply to the animal kingdom. While many animals look gorgeous and smart, others need a beauty expert intervention.
From a frog the has sagging skin to a deer that one”s teeth that dentists will find it hard to fix, for glamorous body color and over-sized claw, here are the top 10 animals that simply need a major makeover!
Porcupines are rodents that grow to about 63–91 cm long, weigh between 5.4–16 kg, with a 20–25 cm long tail. There are about 24 porcupine species, easily recognized by their coats of 30,000 sharp spines or needle-like quills. Porcupines use their quills for defense which may be lethal to attacking enemy if hit.
However, this defense mechanism can backfire since fellow porcupines are not immune to the quills’ sting. Porcupines need to climb high trees just to feast on their favorite diet–leaves and small twigs. Problem is, this expedition may turn out to be a disaster, porcupines often fall and impale themselves with their own spines. Isn’t it ironic? Being harm by your own defense mechanism.
The Titicaca Frog (Telmatobius culeus) is a very unusual looking frog found only in Lake Titicaca, South America. It is a big challenge for this frog to live in a lake 10,000 ft above sea level where it has to deal with very thin oxygen supply. The key to their success is staying below the lake’s surface.
Despite the fact that Titicaca Frog has small lungs, mother nature has given it special characteristics. It has found an efficient method on how to survive the hostile environment–More skin! This explains why Titicaca frog has saggy skin that can stretch over 50 cm (20 in) wide. We can picture this frog as a little child dressed in his father’s baggy coveralls.
Male Fiddler Crab
Male fiddler crabs have one of their feeding claws greatly enlarged, which may comprise up to 40% of their total body mass! This enlarged claw is used to challenge males to fight and guess what– to attract females for mating.In this case, the saying “Size does matter” suits well. Male fiddler crabs dig burrows where the females visit at least 100 prospective mates before settling for one. However, this super-sized claw has its drawback. Male fiddler crabs encounter a hard time eating and worse, with a claw to big to conceal, they are an easy target for predators. Now, having a big claw is a blessing and at the same time a curse to a male fiddler crab.
Male peacock is best known for its glittering tail feathers, which it uses to attract females during courtship. Females carefully check out their suitors’ feathers before settling on one. A male’s tail can measure up to 2.4 m (8 ft) wide and covered with more than 200 feathers can indicate his status, age, and enthusiasm.
Peacocks with the bluest blue eyes on their tail are considered to be the healthiest. However, the peacock that owns the most extravagant feathers faces a big problem – too many feathers mean difficulty in taking off or flying. Add to this, the poor peacock may find it hard to elude his predators.
White Bengal Tiger
The White Bengal Tiger is what we may call beauty and beast in a package. This solitary animal is well-known for its unusual coloring which is caused by a mutant gene. In the case of the White Bengal tiger, having fair complexion is a great liability. Though, its ‘whitish look’ doesn’t affect its health, it does affect their survival ability. White is not the best color to have in the jungle, as a result White Bengal Tiger population in the wild is now dwindling down. The big question right now is – have fate played a big joke on this poor animal?
For the male lion, a hairdo can never be too big or too dark. Its mane is the most distinctive trait for this unique cat. The male lion’s mane starts to grow around age two that surrounds the neck. He uses it for attracting the ladies. The mane can vary in color from tawny/tan to black. And the more brunette the mane is – the better his chances to pick his mate. However, having a darker mane has its disadvantages; it receives much sunlight, which makes the lion’s body temperature soar. Add to its sperm count drop. I guess being bald is beautiful after all!
A small species of fish about only a few centimeters long, male guppies (Poecilia reticulata) are well-known for its natural varieties and form. While female guppies sports a rather are usually dull green to yellowish-Green in color, male guppies are the colorful sex in this species. Male guppies can generate lots of following when it comes to fashion. In developed strains the male features larger and colorful spots, splashes and stripes on the body and fins.
And these features are great factors for male guppies to catch the attention of females. However, predators have an easy time locating them due to their brightly colored bodies. Perhaps, male guppies should resort to ‘black fashion statement’ for their safety.
When it comes to courtship rituals, the Sage Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) can proud itself to own one of the best methods to lure a prospective mate. During spring, male ones gather together on a lek (common breeding ground) and perform a “strutting display”. The male sage grouse has two whitish balls beneath his feather which it fills with air and makes a soft booming sound that can be heard from up to a couple miles away!
The male sage-grouse then struts around with his tail feathers, which serves as a signal for females to pick the most attractive male to mate with. This sing-and-dance routine can be a top candidate for “the weirdest talent show ever”. However, this mating ritual has also its drawback– only a number of males do most of the breeding. And with a population where the females outnumber the males then beggars can’t be choosers!
How would you react if people call you a “pig-deer”. I guess you’ll be disappointed if not, get mad. Did you know that there is a deer that owns this moniker. A native to Sulawesi, Indonesia, Babirusa grows a canine tooth that vertically penetrates the snout, pierce the skin, and reaches through the roof of its mouth. These long upper tusks is not only ugly, but pose a risk to male bureaus’ own survival. Poor animal, he is in for a big headache! He needs a major face makeover if the teeth continue to grow– and worst he is in for a big headache! if the tusks curve back and lodge into his brain.
Our choice for the top spot goes to the male deer and credit it to its rack of antlers. Most species of “True Deer” have large, remarkable antlers with several tines, which can grow up to 2 meters wide and can weigh more than 36 kg. That is a very impressive headdress and a crowd drawer! In fact, the “Best Headdress” could be a tough contest to judge knowing each deer species has its own characteristic antler structure. Male deer use their antler to head-butt its rival during the mating season. However, rivals run the risk of locking together.