Friday, January 10, 2014

Northern Tamandua

Tamandua mexicana
Today's animal is the Northern Tamandua, a small Anteater that lives in Central America, as well as in some of the northern areas of South America.

Tropical forests are where these mammals call home, and they have bodies that are well adapted to tree climbing. They have tough footpads and a large central claw that helps them to maintain a good grip while climbing, along with a prehensile tail.

Climbing adaptations aren't the only physical features that stand out on the Northern Tamandua. Like all Anteaters, they have no teeth. Instead, they have a very long long that is coated in a sticky substance that is perfect for picking up insects in large quantities. Ants and Termites are their preferred bugs, and they can eat close to 10,000 in a single day!

Northern Tamanduas do their hunting at night, sniffing out prey with their noses. They are solitary animals, and only come together when it is time to breed. There is no specific mating seasons for these creatures, and females give birth year round.

IUCN Status : Least Concern
Location : Central and South America
Size : Length up to 50in (1.3m), Weight up to 12lbs (5.4kg)
Classification : Phylum : Chordata -- Class : Mammalia -- Order : Pilosa
Family : Myrmecophagidae -- Genus : Tamandua -- Species : T. mexicana
Image :  Jacob Barnett

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