Friday, February 3, 2017

ZooWeird 65

A doggerel series about odd or little-known animals.

Platypus. The platypus is actually a mammal. A very strange one that is—and not just for the way it looks. On close inspection, it looks like a crazy hybrid of a duck, a beaver, and an otter. For instance, other than the closely-related echidna, it’s the only surviving mammal that lays eggs. Platypuses are also one of the very few known mammals with the sense of electroreception, (or electrolocation), meaning that they can sense the electrical fields produced by other organisms, much as sharks can. The only other known mammals with electroreception are the echidna and the Guiana dolphin (Sotalia guianensis). (All animal info from

The platypus cried, “Curse my luck!
I look like some sad furry duck—

An otter with a silly bill
Who lays some eggsoh, what a skill!”

But, platypus, don’t feel deprived:
Unlike some others, you’ve survived.

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