Siberian Tigers (Panthera tigris) - Manchuria and
Siberia. The orange coat is distinctly patterned with black
stripes with white undersides. The stripes are different on every
tiger, just like our thumbprints are all different. The Siberian
Tiger is the largest of all living tigers. When the cubs are
born, they are about 10 to 12 inches long and weigh less than 2
lbs. The mother will stay with the cubs for two years, teaching
them all they need to know in the wild.
These tigers are playing, probably holding their
claws in, since the claws are sharp and retractable.
The Siberian Tiger is an excellent swimmer.
Very few cats love the water as the tiger seems to. They cool off
in shallow streams and often play in the water.
Gorilla (Gorilla gorilla) - Africa : West Nigeria to Zaire.
The Gorilla is the largest and heaviest of the primates.
Adult Gorilla do not have hair on the face, chest, the palms of the
hands or the soles of their feet. The eyebrows grow straight
across the brow and the nostrils are flared. All Gorillas live in family
groups called "troops". When a male Gorilla
reaches ten or eleven years of age, the
"saddle" of the adult male becomes silvery-gray to white and
are called "silverbacks". The silverback is the
strongest male in the group and is responsible for protecting the others
in the troop.
gorilla) - Africa. This gorilla was eating the berries on the
bush. The Gorilla is a choosy eater. Depending
on what part of Africa the Gorilla live determines some of their
diet. They eat a variety of plants and fruits. Food is
usually not a problem in their "home
range". The Gorilla gets a lot of the moisture they need from
the plants, so don't drink a lot of water. Most of the troop stay
on the ground the majority of the time, only climbing trees to build the
nightly nest. The young will play in the trees
Peafowl (Pavo cristatus) is commonly known as the
Peacock. - India, Sri Lanka. The beautiful long train is
not the peacocks tail but used as an ornament. The train has
some 150 large feathers growing out of his back with vivid eye spots on
the feathers. It is fanned out in a half circle when
displayed. The actual tail is under the train.
Bear (Helarctos malayanus) - Southeastern Asia, Sumatra and Borneo.
This bear is the
smallest of the bear
family. Sun Bear enjoys the sun as the name indicates. Look
at those curved claws. The Sun Bear spends the day
climbing and resting in trees.
Sun Bear (Helarctos malayanus) - Southeastern Asia, Sumaltra and Bornio.
The Sun Bear is sometimes known as the Dog or Honey Bear. They
dig into old logs and bees' nests with their long claws to get insects and
honey. Once they dig, they use the long, ten inch tongue to acquire
the food. The short fur is usually black or gray. There is a
circular tawny to cream patch on the chest and the muzzle is light
Lion (Panthera Leo) - Africa and India. (This
great photo is courtesy of Dr. Stephen Tibbels). The Lions are
social animals living in a group called a pride. The
normal color of the coat is a tawny-yellow, but varies from gray,
whitish to ochre. They hunt mostly at night, but will hunt in the
cool of the morning. Males develop thick, wooly manes. Both
the male and female roar and can be heard several miles
The female Lion is smaller than the male. The Lion is the only cat
that live in large family groups. The females usually stay in the
same "Pride" all their lives. The male, however, will
probably move on to another pride in a few years. Males living in
the pride let the females do the hunter, but have the first choice at the
catch. Gestation last for about 103 days. Usually the female
gives birth to 2 to 4 cubs called a "litter". The cubs are
helpless when born and weigh less than three pounds. After three
months, the cubs will follow their mother. Other females in the
pride will help with the cubs.
Polar Bear (Ursus
maritimus) - Artic Ocean. This Polar Bear seems to be doing
the backstroke. What enjoyment!! The Polar Bear is more
slender than other bears. The coat is whitish-yellow with hollow,
air-filled hairs. The pads of their feet are partially covered with
fur to help them walk on ice and snow. The Polar Bear probably has
the most advanced sense of smell than any other bear.
Ostrich (Struthio camelus) - Africa, from
Senegal to Ethiopia and Tanzania. This is the
largest and tallest bird in the world. The average height of the
Ostrich is 8 feet. It is a flightless bird with extremely
strong legs, enabling the Ostrich to run up to 40 mph. They like
open land areas such as the semi-desert and grasslands. The Ostrich
feeds on leaves, flowers roots and seeds of plants.. The fine downy
plumes are impressive. There are two large toes on each foot, with a
long, sharp claw on each toe.
The male Ostrich lives in a herd of 3 to 10 hens. The
male dominants over the hens, choosing one hen as the dominant
female. The male sometimes mates with other hens besides the chosen
hen and their eggs are all placed in the dominant females nest. The
narrow nest is sometimes as large as 9 feet across. The dominant
male and female will turn the eggs. The Ostrich egg is the largest
egg in the world. The fluffy young are taken care of by both
dominant parents. Contrary to popular belief, the Ostrich does not
bury their heads in the sand. When in danger, the Ostrich will press
their necks to the ground in an attempt to hide. This action
probably led to the myth.
Scarlet Macaw (Ara macao) - Mexico, Central America, North South America,
Brazil and Bolivia. These two parrots have lots of company.
This Macaw is one of the largest of it's kind. When they fly, they do
so squawking loudly.
Cape Thick Knee (Burhinus capensis) - Central and Western
Sub-Sahara Africa. This desert bird was
adorable. What wonderful camouflage the Cape Thick-Knee has in
the semi-desert and grass areas where they live. They are about 17
inches tall and weigh about 4 1/2 ounces. The diet consists of
grass, seeds, insects, rodents, snails and crabs.
Cape Thick-Knee chick. In the spring or early summer the female lays
one to three brown, speckled eggs.