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49 unusual creatures with whom we share the planet
August 20, 2007 10:06 PM   Subscribe

25 Weirdest Animals. See also: 24 bizarre creatures of the deep. Not responsible for nightmares related to the viperfish, the oarfish, or the star-nosed mole.
posted by bijou (63 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

 
(This is the opposite of CuteOverload)
posted by bijou at 10:08 PM on August 20, 2007


The stargazers have eyes on top of their heads (thus the name). They are venomous; they have two large poison spines situated behind the opercle and above the pectoral fins. They can also cause electric shocks.

This is like if God played D&D...
posted by hototogisu at 10:13 PM on August 20, 2007 [3 favorites]


Yeah, I wanna say something to the sea pig...
posted by Poolio at 10:16 PM on August 20, 2007


These lists have been repackaged 100s of times on the interwebs of late.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:18 PM on August 20, 2007


Freaking creepy-ass Aye-Ayes...
*Clicks over to the fish page, passes out*
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 10:19 PM on August 20, 2007


Screw the others... the blobfish (in both links) is by far the creepiest. I mean it looks like a cartoon caricature of an ugly, grumpy, obese man who was exposed to some equally cartoonish (and extreme) radiation and melted down to the point where only his gelatinous head was left, looking up at you with his hopeless, sunken eyes. *shiver*
posted by the other side at 10:27 PM on August 20, 2007 [3 favorites]


some of the animals weren't that weird, but a majority of the things from both lists were just outlandish.
posted by KingoftheWhales at 10:36 PM on August 20, 2007


One more such, while I'm at it: 25 Cool Obscure Animals (Alvy Ampersand: avoid no. 5).
posted by bijou at 10:39 PM on August 20, 2007 [1 favorite]


These lists have been repackaged 100s of times on the interwebs of late.

On the bright side, snarking is timeless.
posted by UbuRoivas at 10:44 PM on August 20, 2007


Ajolotes.
posted by tula at 10:49 PM on August 20, 2007


I like the oar fish. I'd like to catch an oar fish, and then cook it on a really really long grill and then have 100 people over for oar fish and beer.
posted by jefbla at 10:50 PM on August 20, 2007 [1 favorite]


Seconding the blob fish as winner of the least attractive. He seems like a cartoon character (Nowhere Man) in Yellow Submarine.

The Yeti Crab has a similar repugnance to the puss caterpillar, eeek indeed. And I've done a post on the ewww factor of the hagfish, a skeevy critter if ever there were one.

The Dumbo Octopus is totally adorable in a vaguely indecent kind of way. Makes me want to buy him a pair of briefs. Looks like a distant younger cousin of the blobfish.

There are a lot of unusual looking creatures on the planet. The weirdness of a baboon's ass has always intrigued me. The electric colors of a Mandrill's schnozz has also been a mystery. Why a turtle with no shell?

Sometimes critter weirdness comes in small packages, like tiny animals on fingers.
posted by nickyskye at 11:00 PM on August 20, 2007


We had a slow loris when I was a kid (in Borneo). man it was awesome. We named it oop-oop.
posted by vronsky at 11:19 PM on August 20, 2007 [1 favorite]


One of the things I love most about the deep-sea eels is their translucent teeth. It's like they have a mouth full of glass daggers!
posted by lekvar at 11:19 PM on August 20, 2007


Meh. Wake me up when they get to amblypygids.
posted by dhruva at 11:30 PM on August 20, 2007


Funny you showed up, dhruva. I was just thinking that I'd prefer a list of scientifically interesting creatures above just funny-looking ones. Some of these are indeed both - like the platypus - but I want more of the only-critters-of-their-kind, or ones that have evolved with bizarre abilities, like those fish in africa who enter near-death in the dry season & come wriggling out of villagers' walls when the rains come...
posted by UbuRoivas at 11:37 PM on August 20, 2007


I hereby extend a hearty "Nay! Nay!" to the Aye Aye.
Jesus, that thing's creepy. wtf?
posted by miss lynnster at 11:37 PM on August 20, 2007 [1 favorite]


But how do they taste?
posted by Poolio at 11:43 PM on August 20, 2007


On the bright side, snarking is timeless.

So true, and by the way, how come the snark isn't on this list?
posted by flapjax at midnite at 11:44 PM on August 20, 2007


So true, and by the way, how come the snark isn't on this list?

Or the Snorks, for that matter.
posted by Poolio at 11:49 PM on August 20, 2007


scientifically interesting creatures

yeah, like traumatic insemination, for instance.
posted by dhruva at 11:49 PM on August 20, 2007


omg, the amblypygids, *shudder*. Gak those are awful looking and lazarus fish coming out of the walls! Nightmares!

But that slow loris, awww, so vulnerable looking, just lost. In Borneo vronsky? You man of mystery! Little oop oop.
posted by nickyskye at 11:54 PM on August 20, 2007


Or the Snorks, for that matter.

Not to mention the Sneetches.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 11:55 PM on August 20, 2007


Are you sure you're not thinking of the snork, flapjax?
posted by UbuRoivas at 11:55 PM on August 20, 2007


Here's one better suited to flapjax-san. The snork should be somewhere inside.
posted by UbuRoivas at 11:58 PM on August 20, 2007


Smurf the Sneetches, flapjax
posted by Poolio at 12:00 AM on August 21, 2007


and don't forget the Goops.
posted by vronsky at 12:07 AM on August 21, 2007


Nah, vron, it's gotta start with sn! Aren't you paying attention?

So guys, should we just end all this with Snoopy?
posted by flapjax at midnite at 12:09 AM on August 21, 2007


or the Lorax... he speaks for the trees.
posted by Poolio at 12:13 AM on August 21, 2007


Snorglers?
posted by nickyskye at 12:19 AM on August 21, 2007


OK flappy, how about some snoochie boochies?
posted by vronsky at 1:04 AM on August 21, 2007


Sheesh, all you snark, snork, sneetches, snoopy and snorglers people. You haven't lived until you've hunted for snipe!
posted by amyms at 1:13 AM on August 21, 2007


I was about to come here and praise the "25 Worlds Weirdest Animals" list because of the text beneath the pictures, often when these lists show up they're just pictures without any explanation. Then I realized that divaboo.info just had copy/pasted from Wikipedia (I haven't checked all the animals, though) and I became less impressed.

The "24 bizarre creatures of the deep" list of course takes its copy from Wikipedia as well, but they're not hiding the fact.

Still, I love these lists.
posted by soundofsuburbia at 1:51 AM on August 21, 2007


I don't consider a creature unusual unless it has its own phylum. Am I too picky?
posted by cillit bang at 1:56 AM on August 21, 2007 [1 favorite]


moomins & deep-sea fish!
posted by UbuRoivas at 2:07 AM on August 21, 2007


AxoLOL it's a meme waiting to happen.
posted by darkripper at 3:00 AM on August 21, 2007


and nickyskye has already LOLd the dumbo octopus.
posted by UbuRoivas at 3:21 AM on August 21, 2007


AxoLOL it's a meme waiting to happen.

invisible dance dance revolution!
posted by UbuRoivas at 3:23 AM on August 21, 2007


Finally, some wholesome fun for the family on Metafilter.
posted by bluejayk at 3:47 AM on August 21, 2007


mefites have families?
posted by UbuRoivas at 4:04 AM on August 21, 2007


I never thought I'd come across a mammal I didn't find cute. Then there was the the star-nosed mole. And the Aye-aye. But the Dumbo Octopus makes up for them.
posted by Jess the Mess at 4:44 AM on August 21, 2007


I've just spent an amazing half hour with my 10 yr old son going through these. He blew my mind with his instant recognition of the first "don't know" fish as a Goblin shark. You should have seen the pride on his face when we confirmed it through the comments on that site.
Thanks a million for this! ( Proud Momma moment)
posted by Wilder at 5:13 AM on August 21, 2007


I see star-nosed mole, I think John Irving. I just can't help it.
posted by h00py at 5:44 AM on August 21, 2007


I love animals with funny noses. Thanks!
posted by Marit at 6:00 AM on August 21, 2007


The blobfish looks like the angry boss in every cartoon Don Martin ever drew.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:08 AM on August 21, 2007 [1 favorite]


I find Brittney Spears pretty freaky.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 6:12 AM on August 21, 2007


Hey, dances_with_sneetches, we were just talking about your friends!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:16 AM on August 21, 2007


The Blob Fish made my day, and the Axolotl has made the rest of my week; but I kept scrolling down the list thinking "there's no way they could miss the Star Nosed Mole"/"Please no pictures of the Star Nosed Mole"

I repeat, please no more pictures of the Star Nosed Mole. Okay, Internets?
posted by pellucid at 7:28 AM on August 21, 2007


(This is the opposite of CuteOverload)

I was going to disagree with you until I got to worms and star-nosed moles.

Although I still maintain that almost everything on the first list is cute. This includes the axolotl, which I first saw in my biology textbook and immediately went 'aww' over -- in fact, it's that same photo as in the bio book, which seems to be The Photo To Use When Talking About Axolotls.

Well, 'all cute', with a few obvious exceptions. Star-nosed mole, aye-aye... You couldn't call a narwhal cute either. I mean, aww, look at its lustrous sheen and... pointy tusks...?
posted by flibbertigibbet at 7:28 AM on August 21, 2007


Lists like these confirm my bias that I live in one of the greatest places on earth where the only thing we have to worry about are black widows, brown recluses and rattlesnakes. All of which pretty well leave you alone if you do like wise and aren't the size of a bloody compact car.
posted by Mitheral at 7:29 AM on August 21, 2007


This list is useless without Paris Hilton.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 7:42 AM on August 21, 2007 [1 favorite]


I was looking at a wound from a parasitic shark from one of these and going, "EW!" and then something struck me. I wonder if I can articulate. I doubt it. Okay:

Disgust and fear: are they just different extremes of the same emotion? Or are they on completely different continuae?

Well, unless you're ursaphobic, you can stare all day at a picture of an enraged grizzly bear. But you can't look for more than half an instant at, for instance, this. (Don't click. It's not an adorable animal.)

If I were in a room with an enraged grizzly, I'd definitely run into the next room. If in the next room I discovered an ice cream social for people with the above-linked skin disorder, would I run back into the arms of the grizzly? What if the room were hip deep in roaches or blob fish? I wish this were my dissertation topic.
posted by Don Pepino at 9:05 AM on August 21, 2007


longfish is loooooooooooong
posted by Uther Bentrazor at 9:13 AM on August 21, 2007


cillit bang, I don't think you're too picky, but you've taken away my joy about the horseshoe crab being the only living member of Class Merostomata.
posted by nekton at 9:14 AM on August 21, 2007


Did someone mention the snark?
posted by The Bellman at 9:14 AM on August 21, 2007


Did someone mention the snark?

No. Move along.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 9:24 AM on August 21, 2007


Did anyone else notice the "God made these wonderful creatures!" debate in the comments of the first post?

Damn! I can't even enjoy gawking at bizarre natural wonders without the damn Xians nosing in on the discussion!

I think both of these lists are incomplete, seeing as they're both missing the Evangelical Xian.

Oh wait. Perhaps EX belongs on the "Worlds 20 Most Useless and Disappointing Creatures" list?
posted by CitizenD at 9:47 AM on August 21, 2007


Might I also add that I shall never swim in the freaking ocean again. Badass scary fish will eat me.
posted by miss lynnster at 10:21 AM on August 21, 2007


The list really shouldn't include the Komondor Dog and Angora Rabbit, since those are the result of selective breeding by humans, rather than natural evolution.
posted by mike3k at 10:29 AM on August 21, 2007


Yay. I made the list!
posted by Hairy Lobster at 10:31 AM on August 21, 2007 [1 favorite]


Ooohhh, vampire squids..., thanks bijou!
posted by porpoise at 3:25 PM on August 21, 2007


Got to love the Blob.

I've always been fascinated with the Pangolin.
posted by eye of newt at 12:10 AM on August 22, 2007


There's an arresting Julio Cortazar story, "Axolotl," that begins:

There was a time when I thought a great deal about the axolotls. I went to see them in the aquarium at the Jardin des Plantes and stayed for hours watching them, observing their immobility, their faint movements. Now I am an axolotl.

Don't stare too long at the Axolotls, kids!
posted by JHarris at 11:37 AM on August 23, 2007


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