African Wild Ass

Animal Wildlife | African Wild Ass | The African Wild Ass is a wild member of the horse family,Equidae.This species is believed to be the ancestor of the domestic donkey which is usually placed within the same species.They live in the deserts and other arid areas of northeastern Africa,in Eritrea,Ethiopia and Somalia;it formerly had a wider range north and west into Sudan,Egypt and Libya.About 570 individuals exist in the wild.The African Wild Ass is suited for life in the desert,capable of going on for up to three days without drinking water.

African wild asses are well suited to life in a desert or semidesert environment. They have tough digestive systems, which can break down desert vegetation and extract moisture from food efficiently. They can also go without water for a fairly long time. Their large ears give them an excellent sense of hearing and help in cooling. Because of the sparse vegetation in their environment wild asses live somewhat separated from each other (except for mothers and young), unlike the tightly grouped herds of wild horses. They have very loud voices, which can be heard for over 3 km, which helps them to keep in contact with other asses over the wide spaces of the desert.

The African Wild asses can run swiftly, almost as fast as a horse. However, unlike most hoofed mammals, their tendency is to not flee right away from a potentially dangerous situation, but to investigate first before deciding what to do. When they need to, they can defend themselves with kicks from both their front and hind legs. The African Wild Ass eats plant material, often eating thorn bushes and tougher plants that other animals ignore. They need to have water at least every three days, but they are able to survive on water that is dirty and brackish and can get a lot of their moisture from the plant material that they eat.

Sexual maturity of the female ass usually happens by the time she reaches two. Males can also reproduce at two, but it is so competitive that they usually are forced to wait until they are around four. Males are very territorial and will often hold a huge territory that is about 23 km, and they mark the edges of their territories with dung. Other males are allowed in, but they are kept away from the females as much as possible. Male donkeys will bray when the females are in season, and a dominant male of a territory has first right to breed with any female that comes around. The gestational period usually lasts 11-12 months, and the females in the wild usually give birth only once every two years. The young are weaned at about six months of age, and the animals can live approximately 40 years.

In addition to their struggle with domesticated livestock to secure food and water, the African Wild Ass also became a hunted animal for consumption and medicine. Many dangerous weapons found their way into the homeland of the African Wild Ass due to the war between Ethiopia and Eritrea. There is a concern that these weapons will be used more often from now on to hunt more of the African Wild Ass. Currently, there is a protection program in progress to move the African Wild Ass into a protected area of Israel.

Przewalski's Horse

Animal Wildlife | Przewalski's Horse | The Przewalski's Horse is the only remaining wild horse still surviving in the world. Once, it became extinct because it was hunted or it lost in the feeding frenzy with farm animals. Przewalski's Horse is a rare and endangered subspecies of wild horse native to the steppes of central Asia, specifically China and Mongolia. At one time extinct in the wild, it has been reintroduced to its native habitat in Mongolia at the Khustain Nuruu National Park, Takhin Tal Nature Reserve and Khomiin Tal.

In the wild, Przewalski's Horses live in social groups consisting of a dominant stallion, a dominant lead mare, other mares, and their offspring. The patterns of their daily lives exhibit horse behavior similar to that of feral horse herds. Each group has a well-defined home range; within the range, the herd travels between three and six miles a day, spending time grazing, drinking, using salt licks and dozing. At night, the herd clusters and sleeps for about four hours. Ranges of different herds may overlap without conflict, as the stallions are more protective of their mares than their territory.

With a short, muscular body, Przewalski’s horses are smaller than most domesticated horses. They have a pale belly and beige to reddish-brown coat that is short during summer and thicker and longer in winter. Their muzzle is white, and they don an erect and dark mane that lines their large head and neck. They stand about 12 to 14 hands tall at the shoulder, or about 48 to 56 inches (122 to 142 centimeters), and weigh about 440 to 750 pounds (200 to 340 kilograms). While extant in the wild, these horses ate grasses and other vegetation on the steppe, shrublands, and plains of western Mongolia and northern China.

In the 1960s, Przewalski's Horses disappeared once. They were hunted for their meat and hide. Others lost in the feeding frenzy with farm horses. In the 1990s, a project started to return Przewalski's Horses to the wild. Zoos in Europe raised Przewalski's Horses and returned them to wildlife sanctuaries in hometown, Mongolia, and the number of Przewalski's Horses in the wild is starting to increase, little by little.

Ryukyu Tip-Nosed Frog

Animal Wildlife | Ryukyu Tip-Nosed Frog | The Ryukyu Tip-Nosed Frog is a species of frog in the Ranidae family.It is endemic to Japan.Ryukyu Tip-Nosed Frogs only live in the northern main island of Okinawa.Not like the other frogs,Ryukyu Tip-Nosed Frogs have nostrils at the tip of their faces.Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical moist lowland forests and rivers.It is threatened by habitat loss.Ryukyu Tip-Nosed Frogs enjoy eating small bugs or centipedes,and some shellfishes on the land.

Now, the forests that Ryukyu Tip-Nosed Frogs need for living became smaller because people cut down trees to build dams and roads. Many people come to see rare Ryukyu Tip-Nosed Frogs with their own eyes, but their visits hurt the environment. Exotic animals in Okinawa can adapt to the changes in nature. But they are not comfortable living with dams or roads, and being gazed by humans.

Grevy's Zebra

Animal Wildlife | Grevy's Zebra | The Grevy's zebra , also known as the Imperial zebra, is the largest extant wild equid and one of three species of zebra,the other two being the plains zebra and the mountain zebra.The Grevy's zebra is found in Kenya and Ethiopia.Compared with other zebras,it is tall,has large ears,and its stripes are narrower.It is more ass-like in appearance as compared to other zebras,which are more horse-like.Among their kinds who were hunted for their hides,Grevy's Zebra is the largest kind of zebra.The Grevy's Zebra's pattern is like a painting,so it is called the most beautiful of zebras.However,its beauty is its sadness,because it is hunted for its hide.Its numbers keep becoming lower and lower.

Grevy's zebras grow up to nine feet long, weigh up to 990 pounds, and stand up to almost five and a half feet at the shoulder. On average, males are about ten percent larger than females. Big heads, large and rounded ears, and thick, erect manes make the Grevy's zebra appear more mule-like than other zebras. In fact, many experts consider Grevy's zebras to be striped asses that are not closely related to other zebras. Their coats sport dazzling narrow stripes that wrap around each other in a concentric pattern and are bisected by a black stripe running down the spine. Grevy's Zebra is hunted for its beautiful hide and so it has had a shocking drop in numbers.

Males are highly territorial, claiming prime watering and grazing areas with piles of dung called middens. They generally live alone in their territories, except when females move through during mating season. Non-territorial males travel together in groups of two to six animals. This social system differs from that of other zebras, which typically form female harems that live in one male's territory all year. During dry months, many Grevy's zebras migrate to greener mountain pastures, but males on prime territories often remain there year-round. Grevy's zebras inhabit semi-desert areas, including arid grasslands and dusty acacia savannas. The most suitable areas have water year-round.

Normally only one foal is born to a female after a gestation period of thirteen months. Most of the babies are born between May and August. The young zebra has brown stripes and a mane which stretches from the shoulder to the tail. The background colour of the foal's coat is light brown instead of white. This protective colouring helps the foal to "freeze" and blend instantly with its background. The foal can stand on its feet within one hour of its birth and can run with the herd after only a few hours - this gives it a much better chance of escaping from predators, usually lions. Young males leave the herd when they are about two years old and join bachelor herds. Eventually they will collect mares to form their own new herds or perhaps challenge old or weak stallions and take over their herd.

Today, the surviving wild Grevy's Zebras are protected in national parks. The Grevy's Zebra has other things to worry about. Domesticated animals are growing in number, and the grass that the zebra eats has been taken away. Its living space is also disappearing because people are building. Experts speculate there are only around 1,900 to 2,500 wild Grevey's Zebras left.

Ishikawa's Frog

Animal Wildlife | Ishikawa's Frog | Ishikawa's Frog is the most beautiful frog in Japan. Forests are disappearing and rivers are becoming dirty.Ishikawa's frog is in danger.Amphibians have trouble changing when their environment changes.They have a purple and green pattern that looks like moss.It hides them from their enemies.

The population of Okinawajima is designated as a natural monument by Okinawa and Kagoshima Prefectures, but there remains a need for improved protection of forest habitat on both Okinawajima and Amamioshima.

Ishikawa's Frog only lives on Okinawa's main island, and is a very special frog. Some people believe they are Japan's most beautiful frog. Ishikawa's Frog needs small mountain streams in forests to live. However, forests are disappearing and rivers are becoming dirty. Ishikawa's Frog cannot live safely. Their numbers are becoming smaller, and we worry about their disappearance in the future. To stop the disappearance of Ishikawa's Frog, severe rules about catching and caring for them were made. But, that's not enough to save Ishikawa's Frog. Frogs are amphibians, and are very sensitive to changes in environment. We must give back the rivers, forests, and the surrounding nature to Ishikawa's Frog.

El Hierro Giant Lizard

El Hierro Giant Lizard

Animal Wildlife | El Hierro Giant Lizard |The El Hierro Giant Lizard is a species that can be found on the island of El Hierro,1of the Canary Islands (Spain).The species was once present throughout much of the island and on the small offshore RoqueChico deSalmor,but is now confined to a small areas of cliff with sparse vegetation.It is currently restricted to the southern end of theRisco deTibataje,in laFuga deGorreta,located between Guinea and the so-calledPaso delPino.

El Hierro giant lizard is a thickset reptile with a broad head.Adults are dark grey to brown in colour,with two rows of pale orange patches running along its sides.Its belly is mostly brown,but has an orange to red colouration towards the middle.Older El Hierro Giant Lizards are mainly black with some grey.Males are larger than females.El Hierro Giant Lizard is a very large lacertid that can grow beyond 20cm in length,and lives only on theHierro Island of Spain\\\'s Canary Islands.It used to exist in a broader area but now only exists in a certain part of Hierro Island.Their number is down to a mere300 to400,including those returned to wilderness by humans.

El Hierro Giant Lizard

The El Hierro giant lizard is omnivorous.It eats plants and insects.Mating begins inMay and the5 to 13eggs are laid fromJune until the end ofAugust.Their eggs hatch after 61days.Many reptiles become active after raising their body temperature by sunbathing.The body of the El Hierro Giant Lizard can be as hot as 40degreesCelsius after sunbathing.

El Hierro Giant Lizard

The number of El Hierro Giant Lizards has dropped because of a scarcity in food plants and an increase in attacks by seagulls and other animals.Although the extent of human-induced changes to the ecosystem is unknown,with so few El Hierro Giant Lizards in existence, any further human-induced changes to their environment could cause them to go extinct in a flash.To avoid this tragic scenario, Spain has enlisted the entire country to help protect the El Hierro Giant Lizard.

El Hierro Giant Lizard

Golden Poison Frog

Animal Wildlife | Golden Poison Frog | The Golden Poison Frog is the most poisonous animal in the world.Unfortunately,they are on the brink of extinction because tropical rainforests are disappearing.The golden poison Frog's skin is densely coated in alkaloid poison,one of a number of poisons common to dart frogs which prevents nerves from transmitting impulses,leaving the muscles in an inactive state of contraction.This can lead to heart failure or fibrillation.

The Golden Poison Frog's natural enemy is a genus of snakes called the Leimadophis Epinephelus. These snakes are unaffected by the lethal poison of the Golden Poison Frog. The Golden Frog lives on the ground in humid forests, and is only known from primary forest. It is not known whether or not it can adapt to secondary habitats. The eggs are laid on the ground and the males transport the larvae to permanent pools. The main natural sources of food of Golden Poison Frogs are the ants in the genera Brachymyrmex and Paratrechina, but many kinds of insects and other small invertebrates can be devoured, specifically termites and beetles, which can easily be found on the rainforest floor. This frog is considered the most voracious of the dendrobatids.

In captivity, the frog is fed with Drosophila fruit flies, cochineals and crickets, the larvae of various insects, and other small live invertebrate foods. An adult frog can eat food items much larger in relation to its size than most other dendrobatids. Golden Poison Frog is a very important frog to the local indigenous cultures, such as the Choco Emberá people in Colombia's rainforest. The frog is the main source of the poison in the darts used by the natives to hunt their food. The Emberá people carefully expose the frog to the heat of a fire, and the frog exudes small amounts of poisonous fluid. The tips of arrows and darts are soaked in the fluid, and keep their deadly effect for over two years.

In many ways, humans have benefited from the Golden Poison Frog. Yet today, the wild frogs are in danger of extinction. They live in only certain parts of tropical rainforests that are disappearing as deforestation and farm land development continues in various parts of the world.