Blog: Carlita the Croc

Rebels by Nature

Rebels by Nature

Echidnas are egg laying mammals, if that's not a rebel, I don't know what is!

Nature is awesome.  Everything she makes has a purpose.  She makes rules and she is precise.  The result is stunning beauty, symmetry, diversity, and harmony. 

But, I think my favorite thing about Nature is that she breaks her own rules.  She is a rebel against her own laws and the effects are fascinating. 

Today, crocophiles, we’re going to talk about animals that are exceptions to the rules. 

Some you already know, like the Venus Fly Trap, which is a carnivorous plant. The platypus, one of the world’s only egg-laying mammals, is another one of Nature’s exceptions.  Here I will introduce you to some of the lesser known nonconformists and what makes them special.

He’s got that pregnancy glow!

The males give birth.  (Do I sense a collective squeezing-together-of-the-knees by men reading this?)  While you may think that the animal giving birth should be classified as the female, it actually depends on who has the sperm and who has the egg.  That is par for the course with seahorses: females carry the eggs and males contribute the sperm.  But that’s where the plot twist happens.  After a lovely courtship dance, the female deposits her eggs into a pouch in the male’s stomach where he will fertilize them and carry them to term.  When the offspring are ready to be “born” the male seahorse actually experiences contractions and the babies pop out of the pouch hole.  Watch it here!

Bats are a pretty familiar animals to most of us.  And most of us know that bats are mammals.  But did you realize that bats are the only flying mammal in existence?  True, there are flying squirrels and sugar gliders, but they are more “graceful fallers” than flyers.  Bats are able to get lift by pumping their wings, which are adapted fingers covered in a thin membrane of skin.  Come see Brookfield Zoo’s Rodriguez Fruit Bats at Australia House to experience these rebels in person! 

They can eat upside down, too, which is pretty cool.

Vegetarian Spider
Spiders are hardline carnivores, or so we thought!  A few years ago, scientists discovered a tiny herbivorous spider living on acacia trees in Central America.  Rather than feasting on the ants that guard the acacia tree, the spiders use their hunting prowess to avoid the ants and eat the plant’s leaves.  Que, QUE??  Read more here

You do you, Vegetarian Spider.

The lungfish is one of those amazing animals that has remained unchanged for many millennia…much like me!  The lungfish is a spectacular nonconformist because it has lungs AND gills. Lungfish can also hibernate for four years and walk on land!  You may have guessed lungfish can breathe air through lungs, which are actually a modified swim bladder.  It uses this mechanism to breathe when the water in its natural habitat has dried up for the season.  Lungfish…what can’t they do??

I’m a fish that can walk on land. You take an elevator up one story.

And then there’s me:  A talking, typing, tweeting croc. What do you think, humans? Can you think of any other of Nature’s exceptions to the rule? Tweet them to me @candidcroc on Twitter or Instagram!

Posted: 3/11/2016 10:20:12 AM by

Carlita the Croc

I'm Carlita the Croc, here to deliver my candid views on various topics, articles, news, and stories in conservation. For the latest news follow me on Twitter, for striking photos follow me on Instagram.


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