A handful of Christmas Beetles (family Scarabidae, subfamily Rutelinae), north Queensland, Australia
Albino Humpback Whale
A rare white humpback whale calf breaches in Cid Harbour in the Whitsunday Islands area near Australia’s Great Barrier Reef. An extremely rare white humpback whale calf was spotted near Australia’s Great Barrier Reef in an event witnesses described as a “once in a lifetime experience”. Believed to be just a few weeks old, the baby humpback was seen by local man Wayne Fewings, who was with his family in a boat when he spotted a whale pod.
(photo: Wayne Fewings) (via: Telegraph UK)
biomedicalephemera: The Ornithorhynchus
This illustration makes me feel like I could train a platypus to beg for treats…they’d probably stab me with their venomous leg-spikes. Well, the males, at least.
Types of Animal Life. St. George Mivart, 1893.
The platypus is one of the few mammals to produce venom. Males have a pair of spurs on their hind limbs. The male’s pair of spurs spits out a cocktail of poisons that, while excruciatingly painful, is not lethal to most animals.
Venom is produced in the crural glands of the male, which are kidney-shaped alveolar glands located in the upper thigh connected by a thin-walled duct to a calcaneus spur on each hind limb. Female platypuses, in common with echidnas, have rudimentary spur buds which do not develop (dropping off before the end of their first year) and lack functional crural glands. The spur is attached to a small bone which allows articulation; the spur can move at a right angle to the limb allowing a greater range of attack than a fixed spur would allow. The spur normally lies flat against the limb but is raised when required.
The crural gland produces a venom secretion containing at least 19 different peptides, in addition to non-protein components…
(read more: Wikipedia) (photo: Peter Scheunis)
animalworld: TURTLE FROG - Myobatrachus gouldii
NOT A TURTLE, NOT A FROG - this is a mash-up of both - turtle and frog with a little alien thrown in for good measure. It’s a real animal the aptly named Turtle Frog and is endemic to Southwestern Australia.
A very peculiar frog with a body shape resembling a small turtle with its shell removed. The head is very small, with reduced eyes, and quite distinct from the body, unlike most other frogs. The limbs are short but muscular. This species burrows forward through the sand, unlike most of arid-adapted burrowing frogs that use their hind feet and descend backwards in to the soil. The back color ranges from pink to a uniform light to dark brown.
Lays up to 50 eggs. There is no tadpole stage as the embryo goes through its entire development in the egg capsule and emerges as a small but fully formed frog.
Other Australian Animal posts:
* THIS IS MY FAVORITE FROG EVER!!!