I’ve had lots of FROGS as pets (all called Finbar) but none of my frogs has been as strange as the GASTRIC BROODING FROG. She swallows her own eggs! They grow inside her stomach and after about six weeks they come hopping out of her mouth!
One pet I’ve never had is a BAT (although I tried to catch one at Spiffing Castle once). Guess how small the world’s smallest bat is? It’s as small as a bumble bee! And the biggest has a wingspan of seven feet! That’s as long as a bed! These ones are fruit-eaters, which is lucky (unless you’re a fruit).
My brother Oli once had a magic mirror decorated with CHAMELEONS. Most people know that a chameleon’s eyes can move in two different directions at the same time, but did you know that a chameleon’s tongue is twice as long as its body!
And did you know that if you cut the head off a COCKROACH, it can go on living for nine days before it starves to death?
My brother’s mad friend Skipjack likes dressing up as a GIANT SQUID. The real giant squid has the biggest eye (only one) of any living thing. It’s over 30cm (or 12 inches) wide – that’s more than then length of a ruler. No wonder it doesn’t need two eyes like the rest of us.
And talking of strange things in the sea, there’s an animal called a SEA SQUIRT which eats its own brain. A STARFISH doesn’t have a brain at all, and a JELLYFISH is 95% water. If only it had just that extra 5% it wouldn’t be a jellyfish at all – just more sea!
99% of all the animals that have ever lived are now EXTINCT. And if we’re not careful – it will be 100%. So be careful! Here’s what you can do: LISTEN in your science and geography lessons! The more we all understand about the world around us the more we will be able to help animals.
NEVER, EVER, EVER DROP LITTER. Litter Kills. Animals choke to death on plastic and get badly cut on cans or glass. Even throwing apple cores out of the car window is bad – it brings wild animals to the road where they might get run over.
ADOPT an animal through the WORLD WIDE FUND For Nature for £3 per month. (wwf.org.uk). I’ve adopted a baby orang-utan called Koyah and I get letters and photos telling me how he’s getting on. It’s really fun.
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC has a great website called kids.nationalgeographic with lots more Amazing Animal Facts (and Amazing Other Facts) and quizzes and games and fun stuff.
Now I must go and catch some insects to feed Finbar. Bye!