IT'S THE SILKY ANTEATER
The phrase ‘cuteness overload,’ in my opinion, has been used too much. However, in this case, I think we’ll have to use it. For this week’s cuteness overload, let’s visit and learn about an anteater. Oh, you don’t think they’re cute? Take a look.
Photo credit: justcuteanimals.com
But don’t be fooled by this cute, silky ball of fur. This little critter can kill up to 5,000 ants a day, with its long sticky tongue. The tongue also has barbs, which it uses to stab ants. Yuck! But let’s cut Silky some slack. Everyone, including our friend, has to eat to live, and the Silky Anteater just happens to like ants. No surprise there.
Photo credit: http://www.britannica.com/animal/anteater
Our nocturnal friend is active from dusk ‘til dawn, wending its way through the treetops eating ants, termites and other small insects. It’s eyesight and hearing are poor, but its sense of smell is acute. It rarely descends to the ground, but it can walk fairly well on all fours, although it has to turn its claws inward and walk on the sides of its feet.
Silky Anteaters are not aggressive, but in an effort to make itself look really fierce, it will stand on its hind legs and brandish those terrible claws. Be AFRAID! Be very AFRAID!
Photo credit: https://misanthropyx.wordpress.com/tag/silky-anteater/
Considering the fact that Silky Anteaters are just about the size of a squirrel, they really can’t be taken seriously, unless you’re an ant that is. Oh, and one more thing, they have no teeth. As a matter of fact all anteaters have no teeth.
There are four different species of anteater, which vary greatly in size. Our subject is the smallest of all the species. The largest, the Giant Anteater, can grow up to seven feet in length. Anteaters are closely related to sloths, and their next closest relative is the armadillo.
Anteaters live in South and Central America. They prefer tropical forests and grasslands. The Silky Anteater is arboreal (lives in trees), and is an expert climber. His prehensile (able to grasp) tail helps him to keep hold of and balance on branches.
Population numbers of the Silky Anteaters are currently unknown. However, there is great concern for anteaters in general as their habitat is being destroyed. The Giant Anteater, for instance, has a population of approximately 5,000 left in the wild. That’s not good.
Here’s a very good video for you. You’ll see a Silky with a baby on its back, and you’ll also get a good look at him using his prehensile tail.
If you would like to learn more about the Silky Anteater, visit the following sites.
Thanks so much for stopping by again, and don’t forget to share.
Jeanne E. Rogers, Award Winning Author
The Sword of Demelza and The Gift of Sunderland
Middle Grade Fantasy Where Endangered Animal Heroes Roam the Pages!