This type is used to record the species of fictional characters, regardless of whether the species is real or fictional.
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Goblins, also known as "Gobbos", are among the smallest of the goblinoid "greenskin" races in the Warhammer Fantasy setting.
They are smaller than the Orcs and the Hobgoblins but larger than the Gnoblar race (a cousin to the goblins, rather than a tribe or subculture) and Snotlings (a tinier type of Goblinoid). While they lack the size and brute force of the Orcs, they are more clever and cunning than their larger cousins.
In the game, there are different subcultures of Goblins, with varying degrees of autonomy from their Orcish cousins, including the Night Goblins and primitive Forest goblins (a tribe of Goblins residing in the Old World's forests and having an appearance reminiscent of stereotypical Native Americans). All Goblins are violent and malicious, and consider warfare to be a pastime or hobby.
The Hill Goblin is the type most commonly seen in the Old World.
The range of Citadel Miniatures C13 Night Goblins first appeared alongside their now extinct cousins, the Red Goblins, featuring their distinctive cloaks, hoods and shields, and also including fanatics using oversized ball and chain weapons. Whilst rules remain for the ball and chain, no specific profiles for Night
A steam locomotive is a railway locomotive that produces its power through a steam engine. These locomotives are fueled by burning some combustible material, usually coal, wood or oil, to produce steam in a boiler, which drives the steam engine. Both fuel and water supplies are carried with the locomotive, either on the locomotive itself or in wagons pulled behind.
Steam locomotives were first developed in Britain and dominated railway transportation until the middle of the 20th century. From the early 1900s they were gradually superseded by electric and diesel locomotives.
See also: History of rail transport, Category:Early steam locomotives
The earliest railways employed horses to draw carts along railed tracks.
As the development of steam engines progressed through the 18th century, various attempts were made to apply them to road and railway use. In 1784, William Murdoch, a Scottish inventor, built a prototype steam road locomotive. An early working model of a steam rail locomotive was designed and constructed by steamboat pioneer John Fitch in the United States probably during the 1780s or 1790s. His steam locomotive used interior bladed wheels guided by rails or tracks. The
The wildebeest (plural wildebeest or wildebeests, wildebeesties (juv) ), also called the gnu ( /ˈnuː/ NOO or /ˈnjuː/ NEW) is an antelope of the genus Connochaetes. It is a hooved (ungulate) mammal. Wildebeest is Dutch for "wild beast" or "wild cattle" in Afrikaans (beest = cattle), while Connochaetes derives from the Greek words konnos (beard) and khaite (flowing hair). The name "gnu" originates from the Khoikhoi name for these animals, gnou.
Gnus belong to the family Bovidae, which includes antelopes, cattle, goats, and other even-toed horned ungulates. Connochaetes includes two species, both native to Africa: the black wildebeest, or white-tailed gnu (C. gnou), and the blue wildebeest, or brindled gnu (C. taurinus). Fossil records suggest these two species diverged about one million years ago, resulting in northern and southern species. The blue wildebeest changed very little from the ancestor species, while the black wildebeest took on more morphological changes to adapt to a habitat of open grassland in the south. Today, the blue wildebeest has five subspecies, while the black wildebeest has no named subspecies. In East Africa, the wildebeest is the most abundant big-game
The frill-necked lizard (Chlamydosaurus kingii), also known as the frilled lizard or frilled dragon, is found mainly in northern Australia and southern New Guinea. This species is the only member of the genus Chlamydosaurus. Its name comes from the large frill around its neck, which usually stays folded against the lizard's body. It is largely arboreal, spending the majority of the time in the trees. The lizard's diet consists mainly of insects and small vertebrates. The frill-necked lizard is a relatively large lizard, averaging 85 cm in length.
The frill-necked lizard is so called because of the large ruff of skin which usually lies folded back against its head and neck. The neck frill is supported by long spines of cartilage which are connected to the jaw bones. When the lizard is frightened, it gapes its mouth, exposing a bright pink or yellow lining; the frill flares out as well, displaying bright orange and red scales. This reaction is often used to discourage predators or during courtship. The lizard is a member of the agamid family. It is a relatively large lizard, growing up to 85 centimetres (2.79 ft). The lizard is also capable of bipedal locomotion.
Python, from the Greek word (πύθων/πύθωνας), which in turn is from the Hebrew word פתן (Peten) or the Canaanite בת'ן (Bethen), is a genus of nonvenomous pythons found in Africa and Asia. Currently, 7 species are recognised. A member of this genus, P. reticulatus, is among the longest snakes known.
Found in Africa in the tropics south of the Sahara, but not in southern Africa, the extreme southwestern tip, or in Madagascar. In Asia it is found from Bangladesh, Nepal, India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka, including the Nicobar Islands, through Myanmar, east to Indochina, southern China, Hong Kong and Hainan, as well as in the Malayan region of Indonesia and the Philippines.
P. molurus and P. sebae are both invasive species in North America, and they are becoming quite abundant in South Florida and the Everglades.
*) Not including the nominate subspecies.
) Type species.
Python skin is used to make clothing such as vests, belts, boots, shoes or fashion accessories such as handbags. It may also be used to cover the sound board of some string musical instruments, such as the banhu, sanxian or the sanshin.
Spiders (order Araneae) are air-breathing arthropods that have eight legs and chelicerae with fangs that inject venom. They are the largest order of arachnids and rank seventh in total species diversity among all other groups of organisms. Spiders are found worldwide on every continent except for Antarctica, and have become established in nearly every habitat with the exception of air and sea colonization. As of 2008, approximately 40,000 spider species, and 109 families have been recorded by taxonomists; however, there has been confusion within the scientific community as to how all these families should be classified, as evidenced by the over 20 different classifications that have been proposed since 1900.
Anatomically, spiders differ from other arthropods in that the usual body segments are fused into two tagmata, the cephalothorax and abdomen, and joined by a small, cylindrical pedicel. Unlike insects, spiders do not have antennae. In all except the most primitive group, the Mesothelae, spiders have the most centralized nervous systems of all arthropods, as all their ganglia are fused into one mass in the cephalothorax. Unlike most arthropods, spiders have no extensor muscles
Bats are mammals of the order Chiroptera ( /kaɪˈrɒptərə/; from the Greek χείρ - cheir, "hand" and πτερόν - pteron, "wing") whose forelimbs form webbed wings, making them the only mammals naturally capable of true and sustained flight. By contrast, other mammals said to fly, such as flying squirrels, gliding possums, and colugos, glide rather than fly, and can only glide for short distances. Bats do not flap their entire forelimbs, as birds do, but instead flap their spread-out digits, which are very long and covered with a thin membrane or patagium.
Bats represent about 20% of all classified mammal species worldwide, with about 1,240 bat species divided into two suborders: the less specialized and largely fruit-eating 'megachiroptera', or flying foxes, and the more highly specialized and echolocating 'microchiroptera'. About 70% of bats are insectivores. Most of the rest are frugivores, or fruit eaters. A few species, such as the fish-eating bat, feed from animals other than insects, with the vampire bats being the only parasitic mammalian species. Bats are present throughout most of the world, performing vital ecological roles of pollinating flowers and dispersing fruit seeds.
A pony is a small horse (Equus ferus caballus). Depending on context, a pony may be a horse that is under an approximate or exact height at the withers, or a small horse with a specific conformation and temperament. There are many different breeds. Compared to other horses, ponies often exhibit thicker manes, tails and overall coat, as well as proportionally shorter legs, wider barrels, heavier bone, thicker necks, and shorter heads with broader foreheads. The word "pony" derives from the old French poulenet, meaning foal, a young, immature horse, but this is not the modern meaning; unlike a horse foal, a pony remains small when fully grown. However, on occasion, people who are unfamiliar with horses may confuse an adult pony with a foal.
The ancestors of most modern ponies developed small stature due to living on the margins of livable horse habitat. These smaller animals were domesticated and bred for various purposes all over the northern hemisphere. Ponies were historically used for driving and freight transport, as children's mounts, for recreational riding, and later as competitors and performers in their own right. During the Industrial Revolution, particularly in Great
A zombie (Haitian Creole: zonbi; North Mbundu: nzumbe) is an animated corpse resurrected back to life by mystical means, such as witchcraft. The term is often figuratively applied to describe a hypnotized person bereft of consciousness and self-awareness, yet ambulant and able to respond to surrounding stimuli. Since the late 19th century, zombies have acquired notable popularity, especially in North American and European folklore.
In modern times, the term "zombie" has been applied to an undead being in horror fiction, largely drawn from George A. Romero's 1968 film Night of the Living Dead.They have appeared as plot devices in various books, films, video games and in television shows.
According to the tenets of Vodou, a dead person can be revived by a bokor, or sorcerer. Zombies remain under the control of the bokor since they have no will of their own. "Zombi" is also another name of the Vodou snake lwa Damballah Wedo, of Niger–Congo origin; it is akin to the Kikongo word nzambi, which means "god". There also exists within the West African Vodun tradition the zombi astral, which is a part of the human soul that is captured by a bokor and used to enhance the bokor's power. The
The Tcho-Tcho, or Tcho-Tcho people, are a fictional human-like race in the Cthulhu Mythos.
The Tcho-Tcho are first mentioned in August Derleth's 1933 short story "The Thing That Walked on the Wind", in which a character refers in passing to "the forbidden and accursed designs of the Tcho-Tcho people of Burma". Later that year, in "Lair of the Star-Spawn", co-written with Mark Shorer, Derleth expanded on the Tcho-Tcho, describing them as a short, hairless people that worship Lloigor and Zhar.
In H. P. Lovecraft's "The Shadow Out of Time" (1936), they are described as "abominable". In Lovecraft's ghost written "The Horror in the Museum," John Rogers claims that he had visited a ruined city in Indo-China where the Tcho-Tchos once lived.
In T. E. D. Klein's novella Black Man with a Horn, first published in New Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos in 1980, the Tcho-Tchos are described by an American missionary who has met them as "the nastiest people who ever lived(...) They'd been living way up in those hills I don't know how many centuries, and whatever it is they were doing, they weren't going to let a stranger in on it".
In the Call of Cthulhu adventure game book "Curse of the Chthonians"
Wolf spiders are members of the family Lycosidae, from the Ancient Greek word "λύκος" meaning "wolf". They are robust and agile hunters with excellent eyesight. They live mostly solitary lives and hunt alone. Some are opportunistic hunters pouncing upon prey as they find it or even chasing it over short distances. Some will wait for passing prey in or near the mouth of a burrow.
Wolf spiders resemble Nursery web spiders (family Pisauridae), but wolf spiders carry their egg sacs by attaching them to their spinnerets (Pisauridae carry their egg sacs with their chelicerae and pedipalps). Two of the Wolf spider's eight eyes are large and prominent, which distinguishes them from the Nursery web spiders whose eyes are all of approximately equal size.
There are many genera of wolf spider, ranging in body size from less than 1 to 30 millimetres (0.04 to 1.18 in). They have eight eyes arranged in three rows. The bottom row consists of four small eyes, the middle row has two very large eyes (which distinguishes them from the Pisauridae), and the top row has two medium-sized eyes. They depend on their excellent eyesight to hunt. They also possess an acute sense of touch.
Their eyes reflect
is a fictional species that first appeared in the Super Nintendo Entertainment System game EarthBound. They are friendly to the player's party, and help the player defeat the monster Master Belch. All individuals of the species are named Mr. Saturn, except for the friendly Dr. Saturn who will recover all negative status effects for free. They are identical in appearance, each short, pink, with an overlarge nose, whisker, and a bow on its one hair, somewhat resembling a blobfish. They speak broken English, and erratically use the words "boing," "ding," and "zoom" in their speech for unknown reasons, a single common expression being "KAY-O, BOING!". Also, in-game, the text that appears in the Mr. Saturn text windows is a different font than any other in the game, which can be difficult to read at first. The Japanese font is said to be inspired by the handwriting of the young daughter of EarthBound's designer, Shigesato Itoi. They make a return appearance in Mother 3, the sequel to EarthBound. In both games, they help with repairing or building various machines, though it's never shown exactly how a creature with no hands is able to do this.
Mr. Saturns make their home in Saturn
A cyborg, short for "cybernetic organism", is a being with both biological and artificial (i.e. electronic, mechanical, or robotic) parts. See for example biomaterials and bioelectronics. The term was coined in 1960 when Manfred Clynes and Nathan S. Kline used it in an article about the advantages of self-regulating human-machine systems in outer space. D. S. Halacy's Cyborg: Evolution of the Superman in 1965 featured an introduction which spoke of a "new frontier" that was "not merely space, but more profoundly the relationship between 'inner space' to 'outer space' – a bridge...between mind and matter."
The term cyborg is often applied to an organism that has enhanced abilities due to technology, though this perhaps oversimplifies the necessity of feedback for regulating the subsystem. The more strict definition of Cyborg is almost always considered as increasing or enhancing normal capabilities. While cyborgs are commonly thought of as mammals, they might also conceivably be any kind of organism and the term "Cybernetic organism" has been applied to networks, such as road systems, corporations and governments, which have been classed as such. The term can also apply to
A black panther is typically a melanistic color variant of any of several species of larger cat. In Latin America, wild 'black panthers' may be black jaguars (Panthera onca); in Asia and Africa, black leopards (Panthera pardus); in Asia, possibly the very rare black tigers (Panthera tigris); and in North America they may be black jaguars or possibly black cougars (Puma concolor – although this has not been proven to have a black variant), or smaller cats.
Captive black panthers may be black jaguars, or more commonly black leopards.
Melanism in the jaguar (Panthera onca) is conferred by a dominant allele, and in the leopard (Panthera pardus) by a recessive allele. Close examination of the color of these black cats will show that the typical markings are still present, but are hidden by the excess black pigment melanin, giving an effect similar to that of printed silk. This is called "ghost striping". Melanistic and non-melanistic animals can be littermates. It is thought that melanism may confer a selective advantage under certain conditions since it is more common in regions of dense forest, where light levels are lower. Recent, preliminary studies also suggest that melanism might
Found in fictional universe:Star Trek Expanded Universe
The Antican are a fictional species of the planet Antica in the Beta Renner system that made five appearances in the TV series Star Trek: The Next Generation in the First season Episode "Lonely Among us" and subsequent episodes "The Measure Of A Man”, “Captain’s Holiday”, “Unification II",and "Tapestry".
Badar N'D'D played by (Marc Alaimo) was a member of the Antican species, who were enemies of the Selay. In 2364, he served as the Chief Delegate to the Parliament Conference.
The Antican played by background actor (Jerry Crowl) in “Unification II" received no credit for the role. Later the Anticans appeared in four Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Episodes. The Anticans were a large, furry, sentient humanoid species.
The Anticans are long-standing enemies with a neighboring species known as the Selay. In a quest for meat, the Antican diplomatic team supposedly cooked and consumed a member of the Selay delegation. Anticans are a carnivorous species that prefer to eat their meat alive, and they have no compunction about killing and eating their rivals, the Selay. They kill their food using small weapons which project a short energy blade.
In 2364, the Anticans applied for membership to the United Federation of Planets. The USS Enterprise-D transported their delegates to the planet Parliament to help resolve a long standing dispute with their sister planet, Selay, as part of the admission process.
Several Anticans aboard Deep Space Nine in early 2370 were among the evacuees that boarded the Orinoco when the station was evacuated.
Eagles are members of the bird family Accipitridae, and belong to several genera which are not necessarily closely related to each other. Most of the more than sixty species occur in Eurasia and Africa. Outside this area, just eleven species can be found - two species (the Bald Eagle and Golden Eagle) in the United States and Canada, nine species in Central America and South America, and three species in Australia.
Eagles are large, powerfully built birds of prey, with a heavy head and beak. Even the smallest eagles, like the Booted Eagle (Aquila pennata) (which is comparable in size to a Common Buzzard (Buteo buteo) or Red-tailed Hawk (B. jamaicensis)), have relatively longer and more evenly broad wings, and more direct, faster flight. (Despite reduced size in aerodynamic feathers) Most eagles are larger than any other raptors apart from some vultures. The smallest species called eagle is the South Nicobar Serpent Eagle (Spilornis klossi), at 450 g (1 lb) and 40 cm (16 in). The largest species are discussed below. Like all birds of prey, eagles have very large hooked beaks for tearing flesh from their prey, strong muscular legs, and powerful talons. The beak is typically heavier
Bears are mammals of the family Ursidae. Bears are classified as caniforms, or doglike carnivorans, with the pinnipeds being their closest living relatives. Although there are only eight living species of bear, they are widespread, appearing in a wide variety of habitats throughout the Northern Hemisphere and partially in the Southern Hemisphere. Bears are found in the continents of North America, South America, Europe, and Asia.
Common characteristics of modern bears include a large body with stocky legs, a long snout, shaggy hair, plantigrade paws with five nonretractile claws, and a short tail. While the polar bear is mostly carnivorous and the giant panda feeds almost entirely on bamboo, the remaining six species are omnivorous, with varied diets.
With the exceptions of courting individuals and mothers with their young, bears are typically solitary animals. They are generally diurnal, but may be active during the night (nocturnal) or twilight (crepuscular), particularly around humans. Bears are aided by an excellent sense of smell, and despite their heavy build and awkward gait, they can run quickly and are adept climbers and swimmers. In autumn, some bear species forage large
Chimpanzee, sometimes colloquially chimp, is the common name for the two extant species of ape in the genus Pan. The Congo River forms the boundary between the native habitats of the two species:
Chimpanzees are members of the Hominidae family, along with gorillas, humans, and orangutans. Chimpanzees split from the human branch of the family about 4 to 6 million years ago. The two chimpanzee species are the closest living relatives to humans, all being members of the Hominini tribe (along with extinct species of Hominina subtribe). Chimpanzees are the only known members of the Panina subtribe. The two Pan species split only about one million years ago.
The genus Pan is considered to be part of the subfamily Homininae to which humans also belong. These two species are the closest living evolutionary relatives to humans, sharing a common ancestor with humans about four to six million years ago. Research by Mary-Claire King in 1973 found 99% identical DNA between human beings and chimpanzees, although research since has modified that finding to about 94% commonality, with some of the difference occurring in noncoding DNA. It has been proposed, for instance by J. Diamond in his book
The Rock Dove (Columba livia) or Rock Pigeon, is a member of the bird family Columbidae (doves and pigeons). In common usage, this bird is often simply referred to as the "pigeon".
The species includes the domestic pigeon (including the fancy pigeon), and escaped domestic pigeons have given rise to feral populations around the world.
Wild Rock Doves are pale grey with two black bars on each wing, although domestic and feral pigeons are very variable in colour and pattern. There are few visible differences between males and females. The species is generally monogamous, with two squeakers (young) per brood. Both parents care for the young for a time.
Habitats include various open and semi-open environments. Cliffs and rock ledges are used for roosting and breeding in the wild. Originally found wild in Europe, North Africa, and western Asia, feral Pigeon have become established in cities around the world. The species is abundant, with an estimated population of 17 to 28 million feral and wild birds in Europe.
The Rock Dove was first described by Gmelin in 1789. The genus name Columba is the Latinized form of the Ancient Greek κόλυμβος (kolumbos), "a diver", from κολυμβάω (kolumbao),
Found in fictional universe:The Sacred Band of Stepsons universe
In Greek mythology, the Moirai (Ancient Greek: Μοῖραι, "apportioners", Latinized as Moerae)—often known in English as the Fates—were the white-robed incarnations of destiny (Roman equivalent: Parcae, euphemistically the "sparing ones", or Fata; also equivalent to the Germanic Norns). Their number became fixed at three: Clotho (spinner), Lachesis (allotter) and Atropos (unturnable).
They controlled the metaphorical thread of life of every mortal from birth to death. They were independent, at the helm of necessity, directed fate, and watched that the fate assigned to every being by eternal laws might take its course without obstruction. The gods and men had to submit to them, but in the case of Zeus he is portrayed in two ways: as the only one who can command them (the Zeus Moiragetes) or as the one who is also bound to the Moiras as incarnation of the fates. In the Homeric poems Moira or Aisa, is related with the limit and end of life, and Zeus appears as the guider of destiny. In the Theogony of Hesiod, the three Moirai are personified, and are acting over the gods. Later they are daughters of Zeus and Themis, who was the embodiment of divine order and law. In Plato's Republic the
Found in fictional universe:The Sacred Band of Stepsons universe
Vampires are mythological or folkloric beings who subsist by feeding on the life essence (generally in the form of blood) of living creatures, regardless of whether they are undead or a living person/being. Although vampiric entities have been recorded in many cultures, and may go back to "prehistoric times", the term vampire was not popularized until the early 18th century, after an influx of vampire superstition into Western Europe from areas where vampire legends were frequent, such as the Balkans and Eastern Europe, although local variants were also known by different names, such as vrykolakas in Greece and strigoi in Romania. This increased level of vampire superstition in Europe led to mass hysteria and in some cases resulted in corpses actually being staked and people being accused of vampirism.
While even folkloric vampires of the Balkans and Eastern Europe had a wide range of appearance ranging from nearly human to bloated rotting corpses, it was interpretation of the vampire by the Christian Church and the success of vampire literature, namely John Polidori's 1819 novella The Vampyre that established the archetype of charismatic and sophisticated vampire; it is arguably
Chameleons (family Chamaeleonidae) are a distinctive and highly specialized clade of lizards. They are distinguished by their zygodactylous feet, their separately mobile and stereoscopic eyes, their very long, highly modified, and rapidly extrudable tongues, their swaying gait, the possession by many of a prehensile tail, crests or horns on their distinctively shaped heads, and the ability of some to change color. Colors include pink, blue, red, orange, turquoise, yellow, green, brown, and black. Uniquely adapted for climbing and visual hunting, the approximately 160 species of chameleon range from Africa, Madagascar, Spain and Portugal, across south Asia, to Sri Lanka, have been introduced to Hawaii, California, and Florida, and are found in warm habitats that vary from rain forest to desert conditions. Chameleons are often kept as household pets.
The English word chameleon (also chamaeleon) derives from Latin chamaeleō, a borrowing of the Ancient Greek χαμαιλέων (khamailéōn), a compound of χαμαί (khamaí) "on the ground" and λέων (léōn) "lion". The Greek word is a calque translating the Akkadian nēš qaqqari, literally 'lion ground' (adjectives follow nouns in Akkadian).
Skunks (in the United States, occasionally called polecats) are mammals best known for their ability to secrete a liquid with a strong, foul odor. General appearance varies from species to species, from black-and-white to brown or cream colored. Skunks, together with their closest living relatives, the stink badgers, belong to the "skunk family", the "Mephitidae" and to the order Carnivora. There are twelve species of Mephitids, which are divided into four genera: Mephitis (the hooded and striped skunks, two species); Spilogale (spotted skunks, four species); Mydaus (stink badgers, two species); and Conepatus (hog-nosed skunks, four species). The two stink badgers in the Mydaus genus inhabit Indonesia and the Philippines; while all other members of the family inhabit the Americas, ranging from Canada to central South America. All other known mephitids are extinct and known only through fossils, many in Eurasia.
Skunks had been classified as a subfamily within the Mustelidae, or "weasel family", which includes ferrets, weasels, otters, badgers, stoats, and wolverines. However, recent genetic evidence suggests that skunks are not as closely related to the mustelids as previously
The Tyranids are a fictional race from the Warhammer 40,000 tabletop game and its spin-off media. They are known to the Imperium generally as Tyranids, because Tyran is the first known planet they devoured and where they were first encountered. Luckily for the Imperium, Inquisitor Kryptman found oral data concealed on one of the databases on Tyran and dedicated the rest of his life to exterminating the new foe.
They are a nomadic alien race comprising many genetically engineered forms created from harvested bio-mass. They are known as the "Great Devourer" and also "Shadow In The Warp" (after the effect of their hive mind on FTL travel and communications) and pose a severe threat to the Imperium. They seek to consume all in their path, draining all planets of every resource and converting all living and some non-living material into Tyranid biomass.
They are said to be inspired by H. R. Giger's "exo-skeletal nightmares" in the Aliens films.
Tyranids were first described in Rick Priestley's Rogue Trader, the first edition of the Warhammer 40,000. At that time they were not an emphasized race in the game, instead representing a limited number of occasionally encountered alien
Extraterrestrial life (from the Latin words: extra ["beyond", or "not of"] and terrestris ["of or belonging to Earth"]) is defined as life that does not originate from Earth. It is often also referred to as alien life, or simply aliens (or space aliens, to differentiate from other definitions of alien or aliens). These hypothetical forms of life range from simple bacteria-like organisms to beings far more complex than humans.
The development and testing of hypotheses on extraterrestrial life is known as exobiology or astrobiology; the term astrobiology, however, includes the study of life on Earth viewed in its astronomical context. Many scientists consider extraterrestrial life to be plausible, but there is no conclusive evidence for its existence. Since the mid-20th century, there has been an ongoing search for signs of extraterrestrial life, from radios used to detect possible extraterrestrial signals, to telescopes used to search for potentially habitable extrasolar planets. It has also played a major role in works of science fiction.
Alien life, such as bacteria, has been hypothesized to exist in the Solar System and throughout the universe. This hypothesis relies on the vast
Hornbills (Bucerotidae) are a family of bird found in tropical and subtropical Africa, Asia and Melanesia. They are characterized by a long, down-curved bill which is frequently brightly-colored and sometimes has a casque on the upper mandible. Both the common English and the scientific name of the family refer to the shape of the bill, "buceros" being "cow horn" in Greek. In addition, they possess a two-lobed kidney. Hornbills are the only birds in which the first two neck vertebrae (the axis and atlas) are fused together; this probably provides a more stable platform for carrying the bill. The family is omnivorous, feeding on fruit and small animals. They are monogamous breeders nesting in natural cavities in trees and sometimes cliffs. A number of species of hornbill are threatened with extinction, mostly insular species with small ranges.
Hornbills show considerable variation in size as a family, ranging in size from the Black Dwarf Hornbill (Tockus hartlaubi), at 102 grams (3.6 oz) and 30 cm (1 foot), to the Southern Ground Hornbill (Bucorvus leadbeateri), at up to 6.2 kg (13.6 lbs) and 1.2 m (4 feet). Males are always bigger than the females, though the extent to which this
The mosquitoes are a family of small, midge-like flies: the Culicidae. Although a few species are harmless or even useful to humanity, most are a nuisance because they consume blood from living vertebrates, including humans. The females of many species of mosquitoes are blood eating pests. In feeding on blood, some of them transmit extremely harmful human and livestock diseases, such as malaria. Some authorities argue accordingly that mosquitoes are the most dangerous animals on Earth.
Mosquitoes are members of a family of nematocerid flies: the Culicidae (from the Latin culex, genitive culicis meaning "midge" or "gnat"). The word mosquito (formed by mosca and diminutive ito) is from the Spanish for "little fly". Superficially, mosquitoes resemble crane flies (family Tipulidae) and chironomid flies (family Chironomidae); as a result, casual observers seldom realise the important differences between the members of the respective families. In particular, the females of many species of mosquitoes are blood eating pests and dangerous vectors of diseases, whereas members of the similar-looking Chironomidae and Tipulidae are not. Many species of mosquitoes are not blood eaters, and many
A dragon is a legendary creature, typically with serpentine or reptilian traits, that features in the myths of many cultures. There are two distinct cultural traditions of dragons: the European dragon, derived from European folk traditions and which is ultimately related to Greek and Middle Eastern mythologies, and the Chinese dragon, with counterparts in Japan, Korea and other East Asian countries.
The two traditions may have evolved separately, but have influenced each other to a certain extent, particularly with the cross-cultural contact of recent centuries. The English word "dragon" derives from Greek δράκων (drákōn), "dragon, serpent of huge size, water-snake", which probably comes from the verb δρακεῖν (drakeîn) "to see clearly".
The word dragon entered the English language in the early 13th century from Old French dragon, which in turn comes from Latin draconem (nominative draco) meaning "huge serpent, dragon," from the Greek word δράκων, drakon (genitive drakontos, δράκοντος) "serpent, giant seafish", which is believed to have come from an earlier stem drak-, a stem of derkesthai, "to see clearly," from Proto-Indo-European derk- "to see" or "the one with the (deadly)
Armadillidium vulgare, the (common) pill-bug or (common) pill woodlouse, is a widespread European species of woodlouse. It is the most extensively investigated terrestrial isopod species.
Armadillidium vulgare may reach a length of 18 millimetres (0.71 in), and is capable of rolling into a ball when disturbed; this ability, along with its general appearance, gives it the name pill-bug and also creates the potential for confusion with pill millipedes such as Glomeris marginata. It can be distinguished from Armadillidium nasatum and Armadillidium depressum, the only other British species in the genus, by the gap that A. nasatum and A. depressum leave when rolling into a ball; A. vulgare does not leave such a gap.
A. vulgare is able to withstand drier conditions than many other woodlouse species, and is restricted to calcareous soils or coastal areas. It feeds chiefly on decaying plant matter, but also grazes lichens and algae from tree bark and walls.
It is able to regulate its temperature through its behaviour, preferring bright sunshine when temperatures are low, but remaining in shadow when temperatures are high; temperatures below −2 °C (28 °F) or above 36 °C (97 °F) are lethal
Cooper's Hawk (Accipiter cooperii) is a medium-sized hawk native to the North American continent and found from Southern Canada to Northern Mexico. As in many birds of prey, the male is smaller than the female. The birds found east of the Mississippi River tend to be larger on average than the birds found to the west.
Cooper's Hawk was first described by French naturalist Charles Lucien Bonaparte in 1828. It is a member of the goshawk genus Accipiter. This bird was named after the naturalist William Cooper, one of the founders of the New York Lyceum of Natural History (later the New York Academy of Sciences) in New York. Other common names; Big Blue Darter, Chicken Hawk, Hen Hawk, Mexican Hawk, Quail Hawk, Striker and Swift Hawk.
The average size of an adult male ranges from 220 to 410 g (7.8 to 14 oz) with a length between 35 and 46 cm (14 and 18 in). The adult male is significantly smaller than the average female, which weigh 330 to 700 g (12 to 25 oz) and measure 42 to 50 cm (17 to 20 in) long. Its wingspan ranges from 62 to 94 cm (24 to 37 in). Individuals living in the eastern regions, where the sexes average 349 g (12.3 oz) and 566 g (20.0 oz), tend to be larger and heavier
Frogs are a diverse and largely carnivorous group of short-bodied, tailless amphibians composing the order Anura (Ancient Greek an-, without + oura, tail). The oldest fossil "proto-frog" appeared in the early Triassic of Madagascar, but molecular clock dating suggests their origins may extend further back to the Permian, 265 million years ago. Frogs are widely distributed, ranging from the tropics to subarctic regions, but the greatest concentration of species diversity is found in tropical rainforests. There are approximately 4,800 recorded species, making them among the most diverse vertebrate groups.
The body plan of an adult frog is generally characterized by a stout body, protruding eyes, cleft tongue, limbs folded underneath and the absence of a tail. Besides living in fresh water and on dry land, the adults of some species are adapted for living underground or in trees. The skin of the frog is glandular, with secretions ranging from distasteful to toxic. Warty species of frog tend to be called toads. Frog warts are elevations in the skin where glandular toxins tend to concentrate. The distinction between frogs and toads is based on informal naming conventions concentrating
Goombas, known in Japan as Kuribo (クリボー, Kuribō, "Chestnut People"), are a fictional species of sentient mushrooms from Nintendo's Mario franchise. They first appeared in the NES video game Super Mario Bros. as the first enemy players encounter. They have appeared outside of video games, including in film, television, and other media. They are usually brown and are most commonly seen walking around aimlessly, often as an obstacle, in video games. They were included late in the development of Super Mario Bros. in order to create a simple, easy-to-defeat enemy.
The species is considered one of the most iconic elements of the Mario series, appearing in nearly every game in the series, and is often ranked amongst the most famous enemies in video games. Crave Online described it as the series' "everyman". It has been compared to other generic enemies in video games, such as the "Met" enemy from the Mega Man series'. The video game incarnation has been made into several plush toys.
Goombas were first introduced in the video game Super Mario Bros., and were the last enemy added to the game after play testers stated that the Koopa Troopa was too tricky an enemy. As a result, the designers
A hedgehog is any of the spiny mammals of the subfamily Erinaceinae and the order Erinaceomorpha. There are seventeen species of hedgehog in five genera, found through parts of Europe, Asia, Africa and New Zealand (by introduction). There are no hedgehogs native to Australia, and no living species native to the Americas. Hedgehogs share distant ancestry with shrews (order Soricidae), with gymnures possibly being the intermediate link, and have changed little over the last 15 million years. Like many of the first mammals they have adapted to a nocturnal, insectivorous way of life. Hedgehogs' spiny protection resembles that of the unrelated rodent porcupines and monotreme echidnas.
The name hedgehog came into use around the year 1450, derived from the Middle English heyghoge, from heyg, hegge ("hedge"), because it frequents hedgerows, and hoge, hogge ("hog"), from its piglike snout. Other names include urchin, hedgepig and furze-pig.
Hedgehogs are easily recognized by their spines, which are hollow hairs made stiff with keratin. Their spines are not poisonous or barbed and, unlike the quills of a porcupine, cannot easily be removed from the hedgehog. However, spines normally come out
Modified souls are specially created souls that go into soulless dead human bodies to create a anti-hollow soldier. Each mod soul has a special power.
Later on the mod souls were ordered to be killed because they were upseting the balance between soul society and the human world.
A monkey is a primate of the Haplorrhini suborder and simian infraorder, either an Old World monkey or a New World monkey, but excluding apes. There are about 260 known living species of monkey. Many are arboreal, although there are species that live primarily on the ground, such as baboons. Monkeys are generally considered to be intelligent. Unlike apes, monkeys usually have tails. Tailless monkeys may be called "apes", incorrectly according to modern usage; thus the tailless Barbary macaque is called the "Barbary ape".
The New World monkeys (superfamily Ceboidea) are classified within the parvorder of Platyrrhini, whereas the Old World monkeys (superfamily Cercopithecoidea) form part of the parvorder Catarrhini, which also includes the hominoids (apes, including humans). Thus, as Old World monkeys are more closely related to hominoids than they are to New World monkeys, the monkeys are not a unitary (monophyletic) group.
According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the word "monkey" may originate in a German version of the Reynard the Fox fable, published circa 1580. In this version of the fable, a character named Moneke is the son of Martin the Ape. In English, no very clear
Kryptonians are a fictional extraterrestrial race of humanoids within the DC Comics universe who hail from the planet Krypton. The term originated from the stories of DC Comics superhero, Superman. The stories also use "Kryptonian" as an adjective to refer to anything created by or associated with the planet itself or the culture that existed on it.
Members of the dominant species of the planet Krypton are indistinguishable from humans in terms of their physiology and psychology; though their genetics are much different and more complex. The cellular structure of Kryptonians allows for solar energy to be absorbed at extremely high levels. On the planet Krypton, whose sun was an ancient red supergiant with a relatively low energy output, their natural abilities were essentially the same as humans. When exposed to a young yellow star like Earth's Sun, which is much smaller than their own sun and with a vastly higher energy output, their bodies are able to absorb and process so much energy that it eventually manifests as vast superhuman powers (such as flight, superhuman strength, x-ray vision, superhuman speed, invulnerability, heat vision, and superhuman hearing).
The donkey or ass, Equus africanus asinus, is a domesticated member of the Equidae or horse family. The wild ancestor of the donkey is the African wild ass, E. africanus. The donkey has been used as a working animal for at least 5000 years. There are more than 40 million donkeys in the world, mostly in underdeveloped countries, where they are used principally as draught or pack animals. Working donkeys are often associated with those living at or below subsistence levels. Small numbers of donkeys are kept for breeding or as pets in developed countries.
A male donkey or ass is called a jack, a female a jenny or jennet; a young donkey is a foal. Jack donkeys are often used to produce mules.
Asses were first domesticated around 3000 BC, or 4000 BC, probably in Egypt or Mesopotamia, and have spread around the world. They continue to fill important roles in many places today. While domesticated species are increasing in numbers, the African wild ass and another relative, the Onager, are endangered. As beasts of burden and companions, asses and donkeys have worked together with humans for millennia.
Traditionally, the scientific name for the donkey is Equus asinus asinus based on the
The jaguar ( /ˈdʒæɡwɑr/ or UK /ˈdʒæɡjuː.ər/; Panthera onca) is a big cat, a feline in the Panthera genus, and is the only Panthera species found in the Americas. The jaguar is the third-largest feline after the tiger and the lion, and the largest in the Western Hemisphere. The jaguar's present range extends from Southern United States and Mexico across much of Central America and south to Paraguay and northern Argentina. Apart from a known and possibly breeding population in Arizona (southeast of Tucson), the cat has largely been extirpated from the United States since the early 20th century.
This spotted cat most closely resembles the leopard physically, although it is usually larger and of sturdier build and its behavioural and habitat characteristics are closer to those of the tiger. While dense rainforest is its preferred habitat, the jaguar will range across a variety of forested and open terrains. It is strongly associated with the presence of water and is notable, along with the tiger, as a feline that enjoys swimming. The jaguar is largely a solitary, opportunistic, stalk-and-ambush predator at the top of the food chain (an apex predator). It is a keystone species, playing
The red-eared slider (Trachemys scripta elegans) is a semiaquatic turtle belonging to the family Emydidae. It is a subspecies of pond slider. It is the most popular pet turtle in the United States and also popular in the rest of the world. It is native only to the southern United States, but has become established in other places because of pet releases and has become an invasive species in many introduced areas, like California, where it outcompetes the native western pond turtle.
Red-eared sliders get their name from the distinctive red patch of skin around their ears. The "slider" part of their name comes from their ability to slide off rocks and logs and into the water quickly. This species was previously known as Troost's turtle in honor of an American herpetologist; Trachemys scripta troostii is now the scientific name for another subspecies, the Cumberland slider.
Red-eared sliders are almost entirely aquatic, but leave the water to bask in the sun and lay eggs. These reptiles are deceptively fast and are also decent swimmers. They hunt for prey and will attempt to capture it when the opportunity presents itself. They are aware of predators and people, and generally shy away
Shy Guys (ヘイホー, Heihō in Japan) are timid troublemakers known for their robes and masks. Their first appearance was in the non-Mario game Doki Doki Panic. They originally worked for Wart in the dreamworld Subcon, but later joined the general canon as common enemies in the Yoshi series.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is the intelligence of machines and the branch of computer science that aims to create it. AI textbooks define the field as "the study and design of intelligent agents" where an intelligent agent is a system that perceives its environment and takes actions that maximize its chances of success. John McCarthy, who coined the term in 1955, defines it as "the science and engineering of making intelligent machines."
AI research is highly technical and specialized, deeply divided into subfields that often fail to communicate with each other. Some of the division is due to social and cultural factors: subfields have grown up around particular institutions and the work of individual researchers. AI research is also divided by several technical issues. There are subfields which are focused on the solution of specific problems, on one of several possible approaches, on the use of widely differing tools and towards the accomplishment of particular applications. The central problems of AI include such traits as reasoning, knowledge, planning, learning, communication, perception and the ability to move and manipulate objects. General intelligence (or "strong AI") is
In Germanic mythology, a dwarf (Old English dweorg, Old Norse dvergr, Old High German zwerc and gitwerc) is a being that dwells in mountains and in the earth, and is associated with wisdom, smithing, mining, and crafting. Dwarfs are also sometimes described as short and ugly, although some scholars have questioned whether this is a later development stemming from comical portrayals of the beings.
The etymology of the word dwarf is contested, and scholars have proposed varying theories about the origins of the being, including that dwarfs may have originated as nature spirits or beings associated with death, or as a mixture of concepts. Competing etymologies include a basis in the Indo-European root *dheur- (meaning "damage"), the Indo-European root *dhreugh (whence modern German Traum/English dream and trug "deception"), and comparisons have been made with Sanskrit dhvaras (a type of demonic being).
Norse mythology, as recorded in the Poetic Edda (compiled in the 13th century from earlier traditional sources) and the Prose Edda (written by Snorri Sturluson in the 13th century) provide different mythical origins for the beings. The Poetic Edda poem Völuspá details that the dwarfs
The Jack Russell terrier is a small terrier that has its origins in fox hunting. It is principally white-bodied smooth, rough or broken-coated which is commonly confused with the Parson Russell terrier (the American Kennel Club (AKC) and affiliate variant) and the Russell terrier (a shorter legged, stockier variety, whose name within the Fédération Cynologique Internationale is "Jack Russell terrier"), with the term "Jack Russell" commonly misapplied to other small white terriers. The Jack Russell is a broad type, with a size range of 10–15 inches (25–38 cm), the Parson Russell is limited only to a middle range with a standard size of 12–14 inches (30–36 cm), while the Russell terrier is smaller at 8–12 inches (20–30 cm), however each breed has different physical proportions according to the standards of their breed clubs.
Originating in the early 19th century from dogs bred and used by Reverend John Russell, it has similar origins to the modern Fox terrier. The Jack Russell is an energetic breed which relies on a high level of exercise and stimulation, and is relatively free from serious health complaints. It has gone through several changes over the years, through different use
The Osprey (Pandion haliaetus), sometimes known as the sea hawk, fish eagle or fish hawk, is a diurnal, fish-eating bird of prey. It is a large raptor, reaching more than 60 cm (24 in) in length and 180 cm (71 in) across the wings. It is brown on the upperparts and predominantly greyish on the head and underparts, with a black eye patch and wings.
The Osprey tolerates a wide variety of habitats, nesting in any location near a body of water providing an adequate food supply. It is found on all continents except Antarctica although in South America it occurs only as a non-breeding migrant.
As its other common name suggests, the Osprey's diet consists almost exclusively of fish. It possesses specialised physical characteristics and exhibits unique behaviour to assist in hunting and catching prey. As a result of these unique characteristics, it has been given its own taxonomic genus, Pandion and family, Pandionidae. Four subspecies are usually recognized, one of which has recently been given full species status (see below). Despite its propensity to nest near water, the Osprey is not a sea-eagle.
The Osprey was one of the many species described by Carolus Linnaeus in his 18th-century
Procyon is a genus of nocturnal mammals, comprising three species commonly known as raccoons, in the family Procyonidae. The most familiar species, the common raccoon (P. lotor), is often known simply as "the" raccoon, as the two other raccoon species in the genus are native only to the tropics and are considerably lesser-known. Genetic studies have shown that the closest relatives of the raccoon are the ring-tailed cats, coatis and cacomistles.
Raccoons are unusual, for their thumbs (though not opposable) enable them to open many closed containers (such as garbage cans and doors). They are omnivores with a reputation for being clever and mischievous; their intelligence and dexterity equip them to survive in a wide range of environments and are one of the few medium-to-large-sized animals that have enlarged their range since human encroachment began (another is the coyote). Raccoon hindfeet are plantigrade similar to those of humans and bears. Raccoons are sometimes considered vermin or a nuisance. They have readily adapted to urban environments (compare urban opossums, skunks and foxes), scavenging garbage bins and other food sources.
Although there is some variation depending on
The beholder is a fictional monster in the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy role-playing game. It resembles a floating orb of flesh with a large mouth, single central eye, and lots of smaller eyestalks on top with deadly magical powers.
The Beholder is among the most classic of all Dungeons & Dragons monsters, appearing in every edition of the game since 1975. They are one of the few classic Dungeons & Dragons monsters that Wizards of the Coast claims as Product Identity.
Unlike many other Dungeons & Dragons monsters, the beholder is an original creation for D&D, as it is not based on a creature from mythology or other fiction. Rob Kuntz's brother Theron O. Kuntz created the beholder, and Gary Gygax detailed it for publication.
The beholder was introduced with the first Dungeons & Dragons supplement, Greyhawk (1975), and is depicted on its cover (as shown in the section below). It is described as a "Sphere of Many Eyes" or "Eye Tyrant," a levitating globe with ten magical eye stalks. The beholder later appears in the Companion Rules set, in the Dungeon Masters Companion: Book Two (1984). In 1991, it appears in the Dungeons & Dragons Rules Cyclopedia.
With the release of Advanced Dungeons
(Die Hammer-Brￃﾼder in Germany, Hermanos Mazo in Mexico, Frￃﾨres Marteaux in France) are enemy characters present in many of Nintendo's Mario series of video games. Their trademark distinction is that they appear in pairs. Their trademark move is that they attack by throwing large hammers in an arcing path. Their appearance shows them having distinct beaks, classifying them as "Beaked Koopas". However, there are some games where they don't have the distinct beaks and look like normal Koopas.
The Hammer Brothers are one of the few Mario characters (its first appearence om Super Mario Bros.) that still enjoys usage today. They often appear in pairs (hence the name "brothers"), but they sometimes appear separately.
They are usually found on platforms and jump up and down and move back and forth. They are notorious for being one of the hardest enemies to defeat, making avoiding them the easier choice, because they move around so quickly and constantly throw a continuous barrage of hammers all over the place. Bowser moves much slower and the later Bowsers only send 1-2 barrages of hammers.
In Super Mario Bros. 3, several variants of the Hammer Bros. were introduced:
The Shaheen Falcon (Falco peregrinus peregrinator), also known as the Indian Peregrine Falcon, Black Shaheen, Indian Shaheen, or simply the Shaheen, is a non-migratory subspecies of the Peregrine Falcon found mainly on the Indian subcontinent and the nearby island of Sri Lanka.
The taxon was formally described by Carl Jakob Sundevall in 1837. It has sometimes been referred to as Falco atriceps or Falco shaheen.
The Shaheen is a small and powerful-looking falcon with blackish upperparts, rufous underparts with fine, dark streaks, and white on the throat. The complete black face mask is sharply demarcated from the white throat. It has distinctive rufous underwing-coverts. It differs in all these features from the paler F. p. calidus, which is a scarce winter migrant to Sri Lanka. Males and females have similar markings and plumage; apart from size there is no sexual dimorphism. The birds range in length from 380 to 440 mm. The male is about the size of a House Crow (Corvus splendens); the female is larger.
The Shaheen is found in South Asia from Pakistan and Kashmir region over across to the Republic of India and Bangladesh in the east and to Sri Lanka and south-eastern China. In the
Caterpillars are the larval form of members of the order Lepidoptera (the insect order comprising butterflies and moths). They are mostly herbivorous in food habit, although some species are insectivorous. Caterpillars are voracious feeders and many of them are considered to be pests in agriculture. Many moth species are better known in their caterpillar stages because of the damage they cause to fruits and other agricultural produce.
The etymological origins of the word are from the early 16th century, from Middle English catirpel, catirpeller, probably an alteration of Old North French catepelose: cate, cat (from Latin cattus) + pelose, hairy (from Latin pilōsus).
The geometrids, also known as inchworms or loopers, are so named because of the way they move, appearing to measure the earth (the word geometrid means earth-measurer in Greek); the primary reason for this unusual locomotion is the elimination of nearly all the prolegs except the clasper on the terminal segment.
Caterpillars have soft bodies that can grow rapidly between moults. Only the head capsule is hardened. The mandibles are tough and sharp for chewing leaves (this contrasts with most adult Lepidoptera, which have
A flying polyp is a member of a fictional alien race (also called Elder Beings or Polypous Race) in the Cthulhu Mythos. The creature first appeared in H. P. Lovecraft's short story "The Shadow out of Time" (1936).
Lovecraft never uses the term flying polyp, instead merely describing them as "half-polypous" and regularly as "elder things".
[The flying polyps were a] horrible elder race of half polypous, utterly alien entities... They were only partly material and had the power of aerial motion, despite the absence of wings... [They exhibited] a monstrous plasticity and ... temporary lapses of visibility... [S]ingular whistling noises and colossal footprints made up of five circular toe marks seemed also to be associated with them.
—H. P. Lovecraft, "The Shadow Out of Time"
The flying polyps came to Earth out of space as conquerors about seven hundred fifty million years ago. They also inhabited three other planets in the solar system, including possibly Yaksh (Neptune) and Tond (though Tond itself may lie outside the solar system, or may be possibly referring to Pluto, which was discovered only 6 years before the publication of the story). On Earth, they built basalt cities with
The Tok'ra are a fictional alien race on the science fiction television series Stargate SG-1. They first appear in the season 2 episode "In the Line of Duty". In the show, the Tok'ra are biologically the same species as the Goa'uld who inhabit human hosts in a symbiotic relationship, and are opposed to the evil System Lords. They are one of the major offworld allies of Stargate Command.
Biologically, the Tok'ra are the same species as the Goa'uld, though they are opposed to them in every way; their name "Tok'ra" literally means "against Ra," though it has gained the figurative meaning "resistance". The Tok'ra consider it an insult to be called a Goa'uld. They take only willing human hosts, providing long life and perfect health, and share the body equally. Most Tok'ra are spawned from a single Queen, Egeria, who fought the Goa'uld 2,000 years ago and was defeated by the Supreme System Lord Ra. A few other minor Goa'uld have joined the Tok'ra in the past, but the only one to do so in the past 1000 years was actually a Goa'uld spy and did not actually adopt the Tok'ra philosophy. Due to Egeria's death in "Cure", the Tok'ra are a dying race. Due to their small numbers and scarce
The leopard ( /ˈlɛpərd/), Panthera pardus, is a member of the Felidae family and the smallest of the four "big cats" in the genus Panthera, the other three being the tiger, lion, and jaguar. The leopard was once distributed across eastern and southern Asia and Africa, from Siberia to South Africa, but its range of distribution has decreased radically because of hunting and loss of habitat. It is now chiefly found in sub-Saharan Africa; there are also fragmented populations in the Indian subcontinent, Sri Lanka, Indochina, Malaysia, Indonesia, and China. Because of its declining range and population, it is listed as a "Near Threatened" species on the IUCN Red List.
Compared to other members of the Felidae family, the leopard has relatively short legs and a long body with a large skull. It is similar in appearance to the jaguar, but is smaller and more slightly built. Its fur is marked with rosettes similar to those of the jaguar, but the leopard's rosettes are smaller and more densely packed, and do not usually have central spots as the jaguars do. Both leopards and jaguars that are melanistic are known as black panthers.
The species' success in the wild is in part due to its
A gingerbread man is a biscuit or cookie made of gingerbread, usually in the shape of a stylized human, commonly male as the name suggests, although making other shapes, especially seasonal themes (Christmas, Halloween, Easter, etc.) and characters, is quite common as well.
Gingerbread dates back to the 15th century, and figural biscuit-making was practiced in the 16th century. The first documented instance of figure-shaped gingerbread biscuits appearing was in the court of Elizabeth I of England. She had the gingerbread figures made and presented in the likeness of some of her important guests.
Most gingerbread men share the same roughly humanoid shape, with stubby feet and no fingers. Many gingerbread men have a face, though whether the features are indentations within the face itself or other candies stuck on with icing or chocolate varies from recipe to recipe. Other decorations are common; hair, shirt cuffs, and shoes are sometimes applied, but by far the most popular decoration are shirt buttons, which are traditionally represented by gum drops, icing, or raisins.
According to the 2009 Guinness Book of Records, the world’s largest gingerbread man was made on December 2, 2006
The Golden Retriever is a medium-sized breed of dog. They were historically developed as gundogs to retrieve shot waterfowl such as ducks and upland game birds during hunting and shooting parties. They were named retriever because of their ability to retrieve game undamaged. Golden Retrievers have an instinctive love of water. They have a dense inner coat that provides them with adequate warmth, and a water repellent outer coat that lies flat against their bodies. These dogs are well suited to suburban or country environments. Although they need substantial outdoor exercise, they should be kept in a fenced area because of their instincts as hunting dogs and tendency to roam.
The Golden Retrievers' intelligence makes them versatile, allowing them to fill a variety of roles, including guide dog for the blind, hearing dog for the deaf, hunting dog, illegal drug detector, and search and rescue participant. Because of their loyal and gentle temperament, Golden Retrievers are also popular family pets.
Golden Retrievers possess friendly, eager-to-please demeanours, and are the fourth most popular family dog breed (by registration) in the United States, the fifth most popular in Australia,
Koopa Troopas, known in Japan as Nokonoko, are anthropomorphic turtles and basic enemies in the critically acclaimed Mario platform video games from Nintendo. They first appeared in Mario Bros. in the sewers of New York, which Mario and Luigi along with the other obstacles roaming the area have to defeat. In the direct sequel to the game, Super Mario Bros., it was originally the only enemy to defeat, but due to its lack of simplicity, a new enemy had to be created, which was the Goomba. The video game promoted the idea of both enemies walking around aimlessly in which Mario has to avoid, but instead of being defeated, it closes in on its shell and allows Mario to use it as a projectile (which, furthermore, can also harm Mario)..
These creatures appear in other media, such as comics, video game spin-offs and anime. They also are playable in the Mario Kart, debuting with Super Mario Kart, but he did not reprise this role until Mario Kart: Double Dash!!. Another common series is Mario Party, in which players do certain activities.
The Koopa Troopa was designed and developed by Shigeru Miyamoto and created as a common enemy for the arcade game Mario Bros., which was a means and the
Latrodectus hesperus, the western black widow spider or western widow, is a venomous spider species found in western regions of North America. The female's body is 14–16 mm (1/2 in) in length and is black, often with an hourglass-shaped red mark on the lower abdomen. This "hourglass" mark can be yellow, and on rare occasions, white. The male of the species is around half this length and generally a tan color with lighter striping on the abdomen. The population was previously described as a subspecies of Latrodectus mactans and it is closely related to the northern species Latrodectus variolus. The species, as with others of the genus, build irregular or "messy" webs: Unlike the spiral webs or the tunnel-shaped webs of other spiders, the strands of a Latrodectus web have no apparent organization.
The female's consumption of the male after courtship, a cannibalistic and suicidal behaviour observed in Latrodectus hasseltii (Australia's redback), is rare in this species. Male western widows may breed several times during their relatively short lifespans. Males are known to show preference for mating with well-fed females over starved ones, taking cues from the females' webs.
The domestic goat (Capra aegagrus hircus) is a subspecies of goat domesticated from the wild goat of southwest Asia and Eastern Europe. The goat is a member of the family Bovidae and is closely related to the sheep as both are in the goat-antelope subfamily Caprinae. There are over 300 distinct breeds of goat. Goats are one of the oldest domesticated species, and have been used for their milk, meat, hair, and skins over much of the world.
In the 20th century, they have gained popularity as pets. Female goats are referred to as "does" or "nannies", intact males as "bucks" or "billies", and their offspring are "kids". Castrated males are "wethers". Goat meat from younger animals is called "kid" or cabrito (Spanish), and from older animals is simply known as "goat" or sometimes called chevon (French), or in some areas "mutton" (which more often refers to adult sheep meat).
The Modern English word "goat" comes from the Old English gāt which meant "she-goat", and this in turn derived from Proto-Germanic *gaitaz (cf. Old Norse and Dutch geit "goat", German Geiß "she-goat", and Gothic gaits "goat"), ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *ǵhaidos meaning "young goat" (cf. Latin haedus
A dragonfly is an insect belonging to the order Odonata, the suborder Epiprocta or, in the strict sense, the infraorder Anisoptera (from Greek ανισος anisos, "uneven" + πτερος pteros, "wings", due the hindwings being broader than the forewing). It is characterized by large multifaceted eyes, two pairs of strong transparent wings, and an elongated body. Dragonflies can sometimes be mistaken for damselflies, which are morphologically similar, however adults can be differentiated by the fact that the wings of most dragonflies are held away from, and perpendicular to, the body when at rest. Dragonflies possess six legs (like any other insect), but most of them cannot walk well. Dragonflies are some of the fastest insects in the world.
Dragonflies are important predators that eat mosquitoes, and other small insects like flies, bees, ants, wasps, and very rarely butterflies. They are usually found around marshes, lakes, ponds, streams, and wetlands because their larvae, known as "nymphs", are aquatic. Some 5680 different species of dragonflies are known in the world today.
Though dragonflies are predators, they themselves are subject to predation by birds, lizards, frogs, spiders, fish,
Kalidahs are a fictitious species of animal created by children's author L. Frank Baum for his novel The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. They are mentioned and featured in the first half of the story when Dorothy Gale and her companions are traveling through the dark forest. A Kalidah is characterized as a ferocious monster having the head of a tiger and the body of a bear.
Other Kalidahs appear in The Magic of Oz, where they bother Trot and Cap'n Bill. In The Patchwork Girl of Oz, Dr. Pipt keeps Kalidahs struck with his Liquid of Petrefaction by the entrance to his house. The creatures play an important part in Eric Shanower's "Gugu and the Kalidahs." Phyllis Ann Karr's short story "The Guardian Dove," published in the 1990 issue of Oziana, provides a detailed treatment of Kalidah culture.
The 1975 stage musical The Wiz includes a musical number "Kalidah Battle," featuring the Kalidah Queen and two of her gang.
In the film adaptation of The Wiz, the Kalidahs are sharp-toothed trash cans possibly operated by the Subway Peddler, the Wicked Witch of the West's henchman. During the attack in the Subway, they get the Scarecrow by the arms, but are defeated by the bravery of the Cowardly Lion.
The chicken (Gallus gallus domesticus) is a domesticated fowl, a subspecies of the Red Junglefowl. As one of the most common and widespread domestic animals, and with a population of more than 24 billion in 2003, there are more chickens in the world than any other species of bird. Humans keep chickens primarily as a source of food, consuming both their meat and their eggs. The chicken's "cultural and culinary dominance" could be considered amazing to some in view of its believed domestic origin and purpose and it has "inspired contributions to culture, art, cuisine, science and religion" from antiquity to the present.
The traditional poultry farming view of the domestication of the chicken is stated in Encyclopædia Britannica (2007): "Humans first domesticated chickens of Indian origin for the purpose of cockfighting in Asia, Africa, and Europe. Very little formal attention was given to egg or meat production... " Recent genetic studies have pointed to multiple maternal origins in Southeast, East, and South Asia, but with the clade found in the Americas, Europe, the Middle East and Africa originating in the Indian subcontinent. From India the domesticated fowl made its way to the
The Warthog or Common Warthog (Phacochoerus africanus) is a wild member of the pig family that lives in grassland, savanna, and woodland in Sub-Saharan Africa. In the past it was commonly treated as a subspecies of P. aethiopicus, but today that scientific name is restricted to the Desert Warthog of northern Kenya, Somalia, and eastern Ethiopia.
The common name comes from the four large, wart-like protrusions found on the head of the warthog, which serve as a fat reserve and are used for defense when males fight. Afrikaans-speaking people call the animal "vlakvark", meaning "pig of the plains".
The Warthog is medium-sized as a wild suid species. The head-and-body length ranges in size from 0.9 to 1.5 m (3.0 to 4.9 ft) in length and shoulder height is from 63.5 to 85 cm (25.0 to 33 in). Females, at 45 to 75 kg (99 to 170 lb), are typically a bit smaller and lighter than males, at 60 to 150 kg (130 to 330 lb). A warthog is identifiable by the two pairs of tusks protruding from the mouth and curving upwards. The lower pair, which is far shorter than the upper pair, becomes razor sharp by rubbing against the upper pair every time the mouth is opened and closed. The upper canine teeth
Hobbits are a fictional diminutive humanoid race who inhabit the lands of Middle-earth in J. R. R. Tolkien's fiction.
Hobbits first appeared in the novel The Hobbit, in which the main protagonist, Bilbo Baggins, is the titular hobbit. The novel The Lord of the Rings includes more Hobbits as major characters, Frodo Baggins, Samwise Gamgee, Peregrin Took and Meriadoc Brandybuck, as well as several other minor hobbit characters. Hobbits are also briefly mentioned in The Silmarillion and Unfinished Tales.
According to the author in the prologue to The Lord of the Rings, Hobbits are "relatives" of the race of Men. Elsewhere Tolkien describes Hobbits as a "variety" or separate "branch" of humans. Within the story, Hobbits and other races seem aware of the similarities (hence the colloquial terms "Big People" and "Little People" used in Bree). However, within the story, Hobbits considered themselves a separate people. At the time of the events in The Lord of the Rings, Hobbits lived in the Shire and in Bree in the north west of Middle-earth, though by the end, some had moved out to the Tower Hills and to Gondor and Rohan.
Tolkien believed he had invented the word "hobbit" when he began
The North American beaver (Castor canadensis) is one of the two beaver species. It is found in the Americas, native to North America and introduced to South America. In the United States and Canada, where no other species of beaver occurs, it is usually simply referred to as "beaver". Its other vernacular names, including American beaver and Canadian beaver, distinguish this species from the one other extant beaver, Castor fiber, native to Eurasia. ("Canadian beaver" also refers to the subspecies Castor canadensis canadensis.)
This beaver is the largest rodent in North America and the second or third largest rodent in the world, after the South American capybara. The species' Eurasian counterpart, the European beaver reaches similarly large sizes. Adults usually weigh from 11 to 32 kg (24 to 71 lb), with 20 kg (44 lb) being a typical mass. The head-and-body length is 74–90 cm (29–35 in), with the tail adding a further 20–35 cm (7.9–14 in). Very old individuals can exceptionally exceed normal sizes, weighing more than 40 kg (88 lb) or even as much as 50 kg (110 lb).
Like the capybara, the beaver is semi-aquatic. The beaver has many traits suited to this lifestyle. It has a large
Bullet Bill is an enemy character from the Mario video game series. He is a huge, slow-moving bullet that is fired from a cannon. Bullet Bill first appeared in Super Mario Bros. The only way he could be destroyed was by jumping onto it or running into it after obtaining the star power up. Using fireballs has no effect on him and there is no way to destroy the cannon that he is fired from. Generically, "Bullet Bills", are used to refer to the plural. Bullet Bill's larger incarnations, called Banzai Bills, are occasionally used by gamers as a comparison to overpowered weapons in shooter games, a reference to how insanely large these shells are, and the surprise of their first appearance to players. Bullet Bills generally have beady eyes and a fierce scowl painted on them, a clear reference to the shark-faced Flying Tigers of World War II.
Super Mario Bros.: Bullet Bill first appears in World 5-1. It is usually discharged from a large cannon, known simply as a Bullet Bill Blaster. On occasion, Bullet Bills will be shot from random locations somewhere offscreen.
Super Mario Bros. 2: Bullet Bills did not appear in the American version of Super Mario Bros. 2 by name, but there are
The orangutans are the two exclusively Asian species of extant great apes. Native to Indonesia and Malaysia, orangutans are currently found in only the rainforests of Borneo and Sumatra. Classified in the genus Pongo, orangutans were considered to be one species. However, since 1996, they have been divided into two species: the Bornean orangutan (P. pygmaeus) and the Sumatran orangutan (P. abelii). In addition, the Bornean species is divided into three subspecies. The orangutans are also the only surviving species of the subfamily Ponginae, which also included several other species like Gigantopithecus, the largest known primate. Both species had their genomes sequenced and they appear to have diverged around 400,000 years ago. Orangutans diverged from the rest of the great apes 15.7 to 19.3 mya (million years ago).
Orangutans are the most arboreal great apes and spend most of their time in trees. Their hair is typically reddish-brown, instead of the brown or black hair typical of chimpanzees and gorillas. Males and females differ in size and appearance. Dominant adult males have distinctive cheek pads and produce long calls that attract females and intimidate rivals. Younger males
The worship of the Sacred Bull throughout the ancient world is most familiar to the Western world in the biblical episode of the idol of the Golden Calf. The Golden Calf after being made by the Hebrew people in the wilderness of Sinai, were rejected and destroyed by Moses and his tribe after his time upon the mountain peak (Book of Exodus). Marduk is the "bull of Utu". Shiva's steed is Nandi, the Bull. The sacred bull survives in the constellation Taurus. The bull, whether lunar as in Mesopotamia or solar as in India, is the subject of various other cultural and religious incarnations, as well as modern mentions in new age cultures.
Aurochs are depicted in many Paleolithic European cave paintings such as those found at Lascaux and Livernon in France. Their life force may have been thought to have magical qualities, for early carvings of the aurochs have also been found. The impressive and dangerous aurochs survived into the Iron Age in Anatolia and the Near East and was worshipped throughout that area as a sacred animal; the earliest survivals of a bull cult are at neolithic Çatalhöyük.
The bull was seen in the constellation Taurus by the Chalcolithic and had marked the new year at
An elf (plural: elves) is a type of supernatural being in Germanic mythology and folklore. Elves are first attested in Old English and Old Norse texts and are prominent in traditional British and Scandinavian folklore.
Elves were originally thought of as ambivalent beings with certain magical abilities capable of helping or hindering humans, but in later traditions became increasingly sinister and were believed to afflict humans and livestock in various ways. In early modern folklore they became associated with the fairies of Romance culture. The Romanticist movement revived literary interest in folk beliefs and culture, and elves entered the 20th-century high fantasy genre in the wake of works published by authors such as J. R. R. Tolkien.
The "Christmas elves" of contemporary popular culture are of relatively recent tradition, popularized during the late 19th century in the United States, in publications such as Godey's Lady's Book.
The English word elf is from the Old English ælf or elf; in compound as ælfadl "nightmare," ælfsogoða "hiccup," afflictions apparently thought to be caused by elves.
The Old English word is derived from the Proto-Germanic *albiz, which also resulted
The Ostrich, or Common Ostrich (Struthio camelus), is one or two species of large flightless birds native to Africa, the only living member(s) of the genus Struthio that is in the ratite family. Some analyses indicate that the Somali Ostrich may be better considered a full species apart from the Common Ostrich, but most taxonomists consider it to be a subspecies.
Ostriches share the order Struthioniformes with the kiwis, emus, rheas, and cassowaries. It is distinctive in its appearance, with a long neck and legs and the ability to run at maximum speeds of about 70 km/h (43 mph), the fastest land speed of any bird. The Ostrich is the largest living species of bird and lays the largest egg of any living bird (extinct elephant birds of Madagascar and the giant moa of New Zealand did lay larger eggs).
The diet of Ostriches mainly consists of plant matter, though it also eats invertebrates. It lives in nomadic groups which contain between five and fifty birds. When threatened, the Ostrich will either hide itself by lying flat against the ground, or will run away. If cornered, it can attack with a kick from its powerful legs. Mating patterns differ by geographical region, but territorial
The St. Bernard is a breed of very large working dog from the Italian and Swiss Alps, originally bred for rescue. The breed has become famous through tales of alpine rescues, as well as for its enormous size.
The St. Bernard is a giant dog. The average weight of the breed is between 140 and 264 lb (64–120 kg) or more and the approximate height at the withers is 27½ inches to 35½ inches (70 to 90 cm). The coat can be either smooth or rough, with the smooth coat close and flat. The rough coat is dense but flat, and more profuse around the neck and legs. The coat is typically a red color with white, or sometimes a mahogany brindle with white. Black shading is usually found on the face and ears. The tail is long and heavy, hanging low eyes should have naturally tight lids, with "haws only slightly visible". Sometimes the eyes, brown usually, can be icy blue, nearly white.
The ancestors of the St. Bernard share a history with the Sennenhunds, also called Swiss Mountain Dogs or Swiss Cattle Dogs, the large farm dogs of the farmers and dairymen of the livestock guardians, herding dogs, and draft dogs as well as hunting dogs, search and rescue dogs, and watchdogs. These dogs are thought to
Apes are Old World anthropoid mammals, more specifically a clade of tailless catarrhine primates, belonging to the biological superfamily Hominoidea. The apes are native to Africa and South-east Asia. Apes are the largest primates and the orangutan, an ape, is the largest living arboreal animal. Hominoids are traditionally forest dwellers, although chimpanzees may range into savanna, and the extinct australopithecines were likely also savanna inhabitants, inferred from their morphology. Humans inhabit almost every terrestrial habitat.
Hominoidea contains two families of living (extant) species:
Members of the superfamily are called hominoids (not to be confused with "hominids" or "hominins").
Some or all hominoids are also called "apes". However, the term "ape" is used in several different senses. It has been used as a synonym for "monkey" or for any tailless primate with a humanlike appearance. Thus the Barbary macaque, a kind of monkey, is popularly called the "Barbary ape" to indicate its lack of a tail. Biologists have used the term "ape" to mean a member of the superfamily Hominoidea other than humans, or more recently to mean all members of the superfamily Hominoidea, so that
Trout is the name for a number of species of freshwater fish belonging to the genera Oncorhynchus, Salmo and Salvelinus, all of the subfamily Salmoninae of the family Salmonidae. The word trout is also used as part of the name of some non-salmonid fish such as Cynoscion nebulosus, the spotted seatrout or speckled trout.
Trout are closely related to salmon and char (or charr): species termed salmon and char occur in the same genera as do trout (Oncorhynchus - Pacific salmon and trout, Salmo - Atlantic salmon and various trout, Salvelinus - char and trout).
Most trout such as Lake trout live in freshwater lakes and/or rivers exclusively, while there are others such as the Rainbow trout which spend two or three years at sea before returning to freshwater to spawn, a habit more typical of salmon.
Trout are an important food source for humans and wildlife including brown bears, birds of prey such as eagles, and other animals. They are classified as an oily fish.
The name trout is commonly used for some species in three of the seven genera in the subfamily Salmoninae: Salmo, Atlantic species; Oncorhynchus, Pacific species; and Salvelinus, which includes fish also sometimes called char or
Birds (class Aves) are feathered, winged, bipedal, endothermic (warm-blooded), egg-laying, vertebrate animals. With around 10,000 living species, they are the most speciose class of tetrapod vertebrates. All present species belong to the subclass Neornithes, and inhabit ecosystems across the globe, from the Arctic to the Antarctic. Extant birds range in size from the 5 cm (2 in) Bee Hummingbird to the 2.75 m (9 ft) Ostrich. The fossil record indicates that birds emerged within theropod dinosaurs during the Jurassic period, around 160 million years (Ma) ago. Paleontologists regard birds as the only clade of dinosaurs to have survived the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event 65.5 Ma (million years) ago.
Modern birds are characterised by feathers, a beak with no teeth, the laying of hard-shelled eggs, a high metabolic rate, a four-chambered heart, and a lightweight but strong skeleton. All living species of birds have wings—the now extinct flightless moa of New Zealand being the only exception. Wings are evolved forelimbs, and most bird species can fly. Flightless birds include ratites, penguins, and a number of diverse endemic island species. Birds also have unique digestive and
Cattle (colloquially cows) are the most common type of large domesticated ungulates. They are a prominent modern member of the subfamily Bovinae, are the most widespread species of the genus Bos, and are most commonly classified collectively as Bos primigenius. Cattle are raised as livestock for meat (beef and veal), as dairy animals for milk and other dairy products, and as draft animals (oxen or bullocks) (pulling carts, plows and the like). Other products include leather and dung for manure or fuel. In some countries, such as India, cattle are sacred. From as few as eighty progenitors domesticated in southeast Turkey about 10,500 years ago, it is estimated that there are now 1.3 billion cattle in the world today. In 2009, cattle became the first livestock animal to have a fully mapped genome.
Cattle were originally identified as three separate species: Bos taurus, the European or "taurine" cattle (including similar types from Africa and Asia); Bos indicus, the zebu; and the extinct Bos primigenius, the aurochs. The aurochs is ancestral to both zebu and taurine cattle. Recently these three have increasingly been grouped as one species, with Bos primigenius taurus, Bos primigenius
A kangaroo (/ˌkæŋɡəˈruː/) is a marsupial from the family Macropodidae (macropods, meaning 'large foot'). In common use the term is used to describe the largest species from this family, especially those of the genus Macropus, red kangaroo, antilopine kangaroo, eastern grey kangaroo and western grey kangaroo. Kangaroos are endemic to the country of Australia. The smaller macropods are found in Australia and New Guinea.
Kangaroos have large, powerful hind legs, large feet adapted for leaping, a long muscular tail for balance, and a small head. Like most marsupials, female kangaroos have a pouch called a marsupium in which joeys complete postnatal development.
Larger kangaroos have adapted much better to changes brought to the Australian landscape by humans and though many of their smaller cousins are endangered, they are plentiful. They are not farmed to any extent, but wild kangaroos are shot for meat, leather hides, sport, and to protect grazing land for sheep and cattle. Although there is some controversy, harvesting kangaroo meat has many environmental and health benefits over traditional meats.
The kangaroo is a national symbol of Australia: its emblem is used on the Australian
Clawed lobsters comprise a family (Nephropidae, sometimes also Homaridae) of large marine crustaceans. They have long bodies with muscular tails, and live in crevices or burrows on the sea floor. Three of their five pairs of legs have claws, including the first pair, which are usually much larger than the others. Highly prized as seafood, lobsters are economically important, and are often one of the most profitable commodities in coastal areas they populate. Commercially important species include two species of Homarus from the northern Atlantic Ocean, and scampi – the northern-hemisphere genus Nephrops and the southern-hemisphere genus Metanephrops. Although several other groups of crustaceans have the word "lobster" in their names, the unqualified term "lobster" generally refers to the clawed lobsters of the family Nephropidae. Clawed lobsters are not closely related to spiny lobsters or slipper lobsters, which have no claws (chelae), or to squat lobsters. The closest living relatives of clawed lobsters are the reef lobsters and the three families of freshwater crayfish.
Lobsters are invertebrates with a hard protective exoskeleton. Like most arthropods, lobsters must moult in
Goanna is the name used to refer to any number of Australian monitor lizards of the genus Varanus, as well as to certain species from Southeast Asia.
There are around 30 species of goanna, 25 of which are found in Australia. They are a varied group of carnivorous reptiles that range greatly in size and fill several ecological niches.
The goanna features prominently in Aboriginal mythology and Australian folklore.
Being predatory lizards, goannas are often quite large, or at least bulky, with sharp teeth and claws. The largest is the perentie (Varanus giganteus), which can grow over 2m (78.7 inches) in length.
Not all goannas are gargantuan. Pygmy goannas may be smaller than a man's arm. The smallest of these, the short-tailed monitor (Varanus brevicuda) reaches only 20 cm in length. They survive on smaller prey such as insects and mice.
Goannas combine predatory and scavenging behaviour. A goanna will prey upon any animal it can catch that is small enough to eat whole. Goannas have been blamed for the death of sheep by farmers, though most likely erroneously, as goannas are also eaters of carrion and are attracted to rotting meat.
Most goannas are dark in colouration, whites,
In the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy role-playing game, illithids (commonly known as mind flayers) are monstrous humanoid aberrations with psionic powers. In a typical Dungeons & Dragons campaign setting, they live in the moist caverns and cities of the enormous Underdark. Illithids believe themselves to be the dominant species of the multiverse and use other intelligent creatures as thralls, slaves, and chattel.
The illithid is considered "Product Identity" by Wizards of the Coast and as such is not released under its Open Game License.
Mind flayers were created by Gary Gygax, who has said that one of his inspirations for them was the cover painting of the book The Burrowers Beneath by Brian Lumley, a story grounded in the Cthulhu Mythos created by H.P. Lovecraft.
Mind flayers first appeared in the official newsletter of TSR Games, The Strategic Review #1, Spring 1975. Here, the mind flayer is described as "a super-intelligent, man-shaped creature with four tentacles by its mouth which it uses to strike its prey." When it hits prey with a tentacle, the tentacle penetrates to the brain and draws it forth, allowing the monster to devour it. A mind flayer's major weapon is given as the
The Phalanx are a fictional cybernetic species in the Marvel Comics universe. They have come in conflict with the X-Men and related groups on several occasions. They form a hive mind, linking each member by a telepathy-like system.
The Phalanx were created by writer Scott Lobdell and given definitive design by artist Joe Madureira. They owe much in concept and appearance to the original Technarchy (by writer Chris Claremont and artist Bill Sienkiewicz). Although appearing in prototype variations in earlier issues, the Phalanx first appeared in their full form in Uncanny X-Men #312 (May 1994).
The term phalanx (Greek: φάλλαγα, phālanga) (plural phalanxes or phalanges (Greek: φάλλαγες, phālanges)) is a rectangular military formation, usually composed entirely of heavy infantry armed with spears, pikes, or similar weapons, particularly in Ancient Greek warfare. The term can also refer more generally to a wall of separate parts which forms a whole unit, and it is in this sense that it fits the fictional alien race.
Phalanx are formed when organic lifeforms are infected with the Technarchy's techno-organic transmode virus. They pass through a lifecycle attempting to infect others before
Turtles are reptiles of the order Chelonii or Testudines characterised by a special bony or cartilaginous shell developed from their ribs that acts as a shield. "Turtle" may either refer to the order as a whole, or to particular Turtle which make up a form taxon that is not monophyletic.
The order Chelonii or Testudines includes both extant (living) and extinct species. The earliest known turtles date from 215 million years ago, making turtles one of the oldest reptile groups and a more ancient group than lizards, snakes and crocodiles. Of the many species alive today, some are highly endangered.
Like other reptiles, turtles are ectotherms—their internal temperature varies according to the ambient environment, commonly called cold-blooded. However, leatherback sea turtles have noticeably higher body temperature than surrounding water because of their high metabolic rate.
Like other amniotes (reptiles, dinosaurs, birds, and mammals), they breathe air and do not lay eggs underwater, although many species live in or around water. The largest turtles are aquatic.
The largest living chelonian is the leatherback sea turtle (Dermochelys coriacea), which reaches a shell length of 200
A werewolf, also known as a lycanthrope (from the Greek λυκάνθρωπος: λύκος, lukos, "wolf", and ἄνθρωπος, anthrōpos, "man"), is a mythological or folkloric human with the ability to shapeshift into a wolf or an anthropomorphic wolf-like creature, either purposely or after being placed under a curse and/or lycanthropic affliction via a bite or scratch from a werewolf, or some other means. This transformation is often associated with the appearance of the full moon, as popularly noted by the medieval chronicler Gervase of Tilbury, and perhaps in earlier times among the ancient Greeks through the writings of Petronius.
In addition to the natural characteristics inherent to both wolves and humans, werewolves are often attributed strength and speed far beyond those of wolves or men. The werewolf is generally held as a European character, although its lore spread through the world in later times. Shape-shifters, similar to werewolves, are common in tales from all over the world, most notably amongst the Native Americans, though most of them involve animal forms other than wolves.
Werewolves are a frequent subject of modern fiction, although fictional werewolves have been attributed traits
The domestic cat (Felis catus or Felis silvestris catus) is a small, usually furry, domesticated, carnivorous mammal. It is often called the housecat when kept as an indoor pet, or simply the cat when there is no need to distinguish it from other felids and felines. Cats are valued by humans for companionship and ability to hunt vermin and household pests.
Cats are similar in anatomy to the other felids, with strong, flexible bodies, quick reflexes, sharp retractable claws, and teeth adapted to killing small prey. Cat senses fit a crepuscular and predatory ecological niche. Cats can hear sounds too faint or too high in frequency for human ears, such as those made by mice and other small game. They can see in near darkness. Like most mammals, cats have poorer color vision and a better sense of smell than humans.
Despite being solitary hunters, cats are a social species, and cat communication includes the use of a variety of vocalizations (meowing, purring, trilling, hissing, growling and grunting) as well as pheromones and types of cat-specific body language.
Cats have a rapid breeding rate. Under controlled breeding, they can be bred and shown as registered pedigree pets, a hobby
Duck is the common name for a large number of species in the Anatidae family of birds, which also includes swans and geese. The ducks are divided among several subfamilies in the Anatidae family; they do not represent a monophyletic group (the group of all descendants of a single common ancestral species) but a form taxon, since swans and geese are not considered ducks. Ducks are mostly aquatic birds, mostly smaller than the swans and geese, and may be found in both fresh water and sea water.
Ducks are sometimes confused with several types of unrelated water birds with similar forms, such as loons or divers, grebes, gallinules, and coots.
The word duck comes from Old English *dūce "diver", a derivative of the verb *dūcan "to duck, bend down low as if to get under something, or dive", because of the way many species in the dabbling duck group feed by upending; compare with Dutch duiken and German tauchen "to dive".
This word replaced Old English ened/ænid "duck", possibly to avoid confusion with other Old English words, like ende "end" with similar forms. Other Germanic languages still have similar words for "duck", for example, Dutch eend "duck" and German Ente "duck". The word
Chipmunks are small, striped squirrels. All species of chipmunks are found in North America, with the exception of the Siberian chipmunk, which is found in Asia.
Chipmunks may be classified either as a single genus, Tamias, or as three genera: Tamias, which includes the eastern chipmunk; Eutamias, which includes the Siberian chipmunk; and Neotamias, which includes the 23 remaining, mostly western, species. These classifications are arbitrary, and most taxonomies over the twentieth century have placed the chipmunks in a single genus. However, studies of mitochondrial DNA show that the divergence between each of the three chipmunk groups is comparable to the genetic dissimilarity between Marmota and Spermophilus.
Tamias is Greek for "storer," a reference to the animals' habit of collecting and storing food for winter use.
The common name originally may have been spelled "chitmunk," from the native Odawa (Ottawa) word jidmoonh, meaning "red squirrel" (cf. Ojibwe, ajidamoo). The earliest form cited in the Oxford English Dictionary (from 1842) is "chipmonk," but "chipmunk" appears in several books from the 1820s and 1830s. Other early forms include "chipmuck" and "chipminck," and in the
Dolphins are marine mammals closely related to whales and porpoises. There are almost forty species of dolphin in 17 genera. They vary in size from 1.2 m (4 ft) and 40 kg (90 lb) (Maui's dolphin), up to 9.5 m (30 ft) and 10 tonnes (9.8 long tons; 11 short tons) (the orca or killer whale). They are found worldwide, mostly in the shallower seas of the continental shelves, and are carnivores, eating mostly fish and squid. The family Delphinidae is the largest in the Cetacean order, and evolved relatively recently, about ten million years ago, during the Miocene. Dolphins are among the most intelligent animals, and their often friendly appearance, an artifact of the "smile" of their mouthline, and seemingly playful attitude have made them very popular in human culture.
The name is originally from Greek δελφίς (delphís), "dolphin", which was related to the Greek δελφύς (delphus), "womb". The animal's name can therefore be interpreted as meaning "a 'fish' with a womb". The name was transmitted via the Latin delphinus (the romanization of the later Greek δελφῖνος – delphinos), which in Medieval Latin became dolfinus and in Old French daulphin, which reintroduced the ph into the word. The
Insects (from Latin insectum, a calque of Greek ἔντομον [éntomon], "cut into sections") are a class of invertebrates within the arthropod phylum that have a chitinous exoskeleton, a three-part body (head, thorax, and abdomen), three pairs of jointed legs, compound eyes, and one pair of antennae. They are among the most diverse groups of animals on the planet, including more than a million described species and representing more than half of all known living organisms. The number of extant species is estimated at between six and ten million, and potentially represent over 90% of the differing metazoan life forms on Earth. Insects may be found in nearly all environments, although only a small number of species occur in the oceans, a habitat dominated by another arthropod group, crustaceans.
The life cycles of insects vary, but most hatch from eggs. Insect growth is constrained by the inelastic exoskeleton and development involves a series of molts. The immature stages can differ from the adults in structure, habit and habitat, and can include a passive pupal stage in those groups that undergo complete metamorphosis. Insects that undergo incomplete metamorphosis lack a pupal stage and
The Scarecrow is a character in the fictional Land of Oz created by American author L. Frank Baum and illustrator William Wallace Denslow. In his first appearance, the Scarecrow reveals that he lacks a brain and desires above all else to have one. In reality, he is only two days old and merely ignorant. Throughout the course of the novel, he demonstrates that he already has the brains he seeks and is later recognized as "the wisest man in all of Oz," although he continues to credit the Wizard for them. He is, however, wise enough to know his own limitations and all too happy to hand the rulership of Oz, passed to him by the Wizard, to Princess Ozma, to become one of her trusted advisors, though he typically spends more time playing games than advising.
In Baum's classic 1900 novel The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, the living scarecrow encounters Dorothy Gale in a field in the Munchkin Country while she is on her way to the Emerald City. He tells her about his creation and of how he at first scared away the crows, before an older one realised he was a straw man, causing the other crows to start eating the corn. The old crow then told the Scarecrow of the importance of brains. The
The African bush elephant or African savanna elephant (Loxodonta africana) is the larger of the two species of African elephant. Both it and the African forest elephant have usually been classified as a single species, known simply as the African elephant, however recent evidence has seen the forest elephant classified as a distinct species. Some authorities still consider the currently available evidence insufficient for splitting African elephants into two species.
African bush elephants are the largest living terrestrial animals, being up to 3.96 m (13.0 ft) tall at the shoulders (a male shot in 1974), on average, males are 3.3 metres (10.8 ft) tall at the shoulders and 5.5 tonnes (12,000 lb) in weight while females are much smaller at 2.7 metres (8.9 ft) tall and 3 tonnes (6,600 lb). The most characteristic features of African elephants are their very large ears, which they use to radiate excess heat, and their trunk, an extension of the upper lip and nose with two opposing extensions at its end, different to the Asian elephant which only has one. The trunk is used for communication and handling objects and food. African elephants also have bigger tusks, large modified
Cockroaches are insects of the order Blattaria or Blattodea, of which about 30 species out of 4,500 total are associated with human habitats. About four species are well known as pests.
Among the best-known pest species are the American cockroach, Periplaneta americana, which is about 30 millimetres (1.2 in) long, the German cockroach, Blattella germanica, about 15 millimetres (0.59 in) long, the Asian cockroach, Blattella asahinai, also about 15 millimetres (0.59 in) in length, and the Oriental cockroach, Blatta orientalis, about 25 millimetres (0.98 in). Tropical cockroaches are often much bigger, and extinct cockroach relatives and 'roachoids' such as the Carboniferous Archimylacris and the Permian Apthoroblattina were not as large as the biggest modern species.
The name cockroach comes from the Spanish word cucaracha, "chafer", "beetle", from cuca, "kind of caterpillar." The scientific name derives from the Latinized Greek name for the insect (Doric Greek: βλάττα, blátta; Ionic and Attic Greek: βλάττη, blátte')
The English form cockroach is a folk etymology reanalysis of the Spanish word into meaningful native parts, although cock referred to a rooster and a roach is a type of
Pierson's Puppeteers, often known just as Puppeteers, are a fictional alien race from American author Larry Niven's Known Space books.
Pierson's Puppeteers are described by Niven as having two forelegs and a single hindleg ending in hooved feet and two snake-like heads instead of a humanoid upper body. The heads are very small, containing a forked tongue, extensive rubbery lips, rimmed with finger-like knobs, and a single eye per head. The Puppeteer brain is housed not in the heads, but in the "thoracic" cavity well protected beneath the mane-covered hump from which the heads emerge. They use the "mouths" to manipulate objects, as a humanoid uses hands. The Puppeteer's native language sounds like highly complex orchestral music, but they seem to be able to reproduce human language without difficulty or device, as well as the Heroes' Tongue (Kzinti), suggesting their vocal arrangement may resemble a pair of avian-like syrinx rather than vocal cords. The sobriquet "Pierson's" comes from the name of the human who made first contact in the early 26th century in the Known Space timeline. According to the Niven story The Soft Weapon, Pierson was a crewman aboard a spaceship at a time
Rattlesnakes are a group of venomous snakes of the genera Crotalus and Sistrurus of the subfamily Crotalinae ("pit vipers"). There are 32 known species of rattlesnake, with between 65-70 subspecies, all native to the Americas, ranging from southern Alberta and southern British Columbia in Canada to Central Argentina.
Rattlesnakes are predators who live in a wide array of habitats, hunting small animals such as birds and rodents. They kill their prey with a venomous bite, rather than by constricting. All rattlesnakes possess a set of fangs with which they inject large quantities of hemotoxic venom. The venom travels through the bloodstream, destroying tissue and causing swelling, internal bleeding, and intense pain. Some species, such as the Mojave Rattlesnake, additionally possess a neurotoxic component in their venom that causes paralysis and other nervous symptoms.
The threat of envenomation, advertised by the loud shaking of the titular noisemaker ("rattle") at the end of their tail, deters many predators. However, rattlesnakes fall prey to hawks, weasels, king snakes, and a variety of other species. Rattlesnakes are heavily preyed upon as neonates, while they are still weak and
In the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy roleplaying game, the carrion crawler a type of fictional monster. A carrion crawler is described as a large yellow and green wormlike aberration. The carrion crawler was introduced in the game's first supplement, Greyhawk, in 1975. The carrion crawler subsequently appeared in the first edition Advanced Dungeons & Dragons game's original Monster Manual sourcebook, and then continued to appear in the game's second edition, third edition, and fourth edition.
The carrion crawler was introduced to the game in its first supplement, Greyhawk (1975). It is described as a worm-shaped scavenger whose touch causes paralyzation.
The carrion crawler appears in the first edition Monster Manual (1977), where it is described as a worm-like cephalopod that scavenges in subterranean areas.
This edition of the D&D game included its own version of the carrion crawler, in the Dungeons & Dragons Basic Set (1977, 1981, 1983). The carrion crawler was also later featured in the Dungeons & Dragons Game set (1991), the Dungeons & Dragons Rules Cyclopedia (1991), the Classic Dungeons & Dragons Game set (1994), and the Dungeons & Dragons Adventure Game set (1999).
The Coccinellidae are a family of beetles, known variously as ladybirds (UK, Ireland, Australia, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, South Africa, New Zealand, India and Malta) or ladybugs (originating in North America, spread through media to many other parts of the world). When they need to use a common name, entomologists widely prefer the names ladybird beetles or lady beetles as these insects are not true bugs. Lesser-used names include God's cow, ladyclock, lady cow, and lady fly.
Coccinellids are small insects, ranging from 1 mm to 10 mm (0.04 to 0.4 inches), and are commonly yellow, orange, or scarlet with small black spots on their wing covers, with black legs, head and antennae. Such color patterns vary greatly however; for example, a minority of species, such as Vibidia duodecimguttata, a twelve-spotted species, have whitish spots on a brown background.
In some species the spots are so large that they merge, leaving the remaining bright colours as spots on a black background. Many coccinellid species are mostly, or entirely, black, grey, or brown and may be difficult for non-entomologists to recognize as coccinellids at all. Conversely, non-entomologists might easily mistake many other
Deinonychus ( /daɪˈnɒnɨkəs/ dy-NON-i-kəs; Greek: δεινός, 'terrible' and ὄνυξ, genitive ὄνυχος 'claw') is a genus of carnivorous dromaeosaurid dinosaurs. There is one described species, Deinonychus antirrhopus. These dinosaurs, which could grow up to 3.4 meters (11 ft) long, lived during the early Cretaceous Period, about 115–108 million years ago (from the mid-Aptian to early Albian stages). Fossils have been recovered from the U.S. states of Montana, Wyoming, and Oklahoma, in rocks of the Cloverly Formation and Antlers Formation, though teeth that may belong to Deinonychus have been found much farther east in Maryland.
Paleontologist John Ostrom's study of Deinonychus in the late 1960s revolutionized the way scientists thought about dinosaurs, leading to the "dinosaur renaissance" and igniting the debate on whether dinosaurs were warm-blooded or cold blooded. Before this, the popular conception of dinosaurs had been one of plodding, reptilian giants. Ostrom noted the small body, sleek, horizontal posture, ratite-like spine, and especially the enlarged raptorial claws on the feet, which suggested an active, agile predator.
"Terrible claw" refers to the unusually
The domestic dog (Canis lupus familiaris), is a subspecies of the gray wolf (Canis lupus), a member of the Canidae family of the mammalian order Carnivora. The term "domestic dog" is generally used for both domesticated and feral varieties. The dog may have been the first animal to be domesticated, and has been the most widely kept working, hunting, and pet in human history. The word "dog" may also mean the male of a canine species, as opposed to the word "bitch" for the female of the species.
The present lineage of dogs was domesticated from gray wolves about 15,000 years ago. Though remains of domesticated dogs have been found in Siberia and Belgium from about 33,000 years ago, none of those lineages seem to have survived the Last Glacial Maximum. Although mDNA testing suggests an evolutionary split between dogs and wolves around 100,000 years ago, no specimens prior to 33,000 years ago are clearly morphologically domesticated dog.
Dogs' value to early human hunter-gatherers led to them quickly becoming ubiquitous across world cultures. Dogs perform many roles for people, such as hunting, herding, pulling loads, protection, assisting police and military, companionship, and, more
The phoenix (Greek: Φοίνιξ Greek pronunciation: [ˈfiniks], Persian: ققنوس, Arabic: العنقاء أو طائر الفينيق, Chinese: 鳳凰 or 不死鳥, Turkish: Tuğrul), Hebrew: פניקס), is a mythical sacred fire bird that can be found in the mythologies of the Arabian, Persians, Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, Chinese, Turks, Indians and (according to Sanchuniathon) Phoenicians/Canaanites.
It is described as a bird with a colorful plumage and a tail of gold and scarlet (or purple, blue, and green according to some legends). It has a 500 to 1000 year life-cycle, near the end of which it builds itself a nest of twigs that then ignites; both nest and bird burn fiercely and are reduced to ashes, from which a new, young phoenix or phoenix egg arises, reborn anew to live again. The new phoenix is destined to live as long as its old self. In some stories, the new phoenix embalms the ashes of its old self in an egg made of myrrh and deposits it in the Egyptian city of Heliopolis (literally "sun-city" in Greek). It is said that the bird's cry is that of a beautiful song. The Phoenix's ability to be reborn from its own ashes implies that it is immortal, though in some stories the new Phoenix is merely the offspring of
A robot is a mechanical device that can perform tasks automatically. It may – but need not – be humanoid in appearance. Some robots require some degree of guidance, which may be done using a remote control, or with a computer interface. A robot is usually an electro-mechanical machine that is guided by a program or circuitry. Robots can be autonomous, semi-autonomous or remotely controlled and range from humanoids such as ASIMO and TOPIO to Nano robots, 'swarm' robots, and industrial robots. By mimicking a lifelike appearance or automating movements, a robot may convey a sense of intelligence or thought of its own. The branch of technology that deals with robots is called robotics.
Machinery was initially used for repetitive functions, such as lifting water and grinding grain. With technological advances more complex machines were developed, such as those invented by Hero of Alexandria in the 1st century AD, and the automata of Al-Jazari in the 12th century AD. They were not widely adopted as human labour, particularly slave labour, was still inexpensive compared to the capital-intensive machines. In the 16th century AD, King Philip II of Spain built an early version of robot,
In folklore traced back to medieval legend, a succubus (plural succubi) is a female demon or supernatural being appearing in dreams, who takes the form of a human woman in order to seduce men, usually through sexual intercourse. The male counterpart is the incubus. Religious traditions hold that repeated intercourse with a succubus may result in the deterioration of health or even death.
In modern fictional representations, a succubus may or may not appear in dreams and is often depicted as a highly attractive seductress or enchantress; whereas, in the past, succubi were generally depicted as frightening and demonic.
The word is derived from Late Latin succuba "strumpet" (from succubare "to lie under", from sub- "under" and cubare "to lie"), used to describe the supernatural being as well. The word is first attested from 1387.
According to Zohar and the Alphabet of Ben Sira, Lilith was Adam's first wife who later became a succubus. She left Adam and refused to return to the Garden of Eden after she mated with archangel Samael. In Zoharistic Kabbalah, there were four succubi who mated with archangel Samael. They were four original queens of the demons Lilith, Agrat Bat Mahlat,
A deity (/ˈdiː.ɨti/ or /ˈdeɪ.ɨti/) is a being, natural, supernatural or preternatural, with superhuman powers or qualities, and who may be thought of as holy, divine, or sacred. Believers may consider or believe that they can communicate with the deity, who can respond supernaturally to their entreaties, and that the deity's myths are true. Some religions have one supreme deity, others have multiple deities of various ranks.
C. Scott Littleton's Gods, Goddesses, And Mythology defined them as "a being with powers greater than those of ordinary humans. but who interacts with humans. positively or negatively, in ways that carry humans to new levels of consciousness beyond the grounded preoccupations of ordinary life.
Deities are depicted in a variety of forms, but are also frequently expressed as having human form. Some faiths and traditions consider it blasphemous to imagine or depict the deity as having any concrete form. Deities are often thought to be immortal, and are commonly assumed to have personalities and to possess consciousness, intellects, desires, and emotions comparable but usually superior to those of humans. A female deity is a goddess.
Natural phenomena whose
Found in fictional universe:Universe of The Legend of Zelda
A fairy (also faery, faerie, fay, fae; euphemistically wee folk, good folk, people of peace, fair folk, etc.) is a type of mythical being or legendary creature, a form of spirit, often described as metaphysical, supernatural or preternatural.
Fairies resemble various beings of other mythologies, though even folklore that uses the term fairy offers many definitions. Sometimes the term describes any magical creature, including goblins or gnomes: at other times, the term only describes a specific type of more ethereal creature.
The word fairy derives from Middle English faierie (also fayerye, feirie, fairie), a direct borrowing from Old French faerie (Modern French féerie) meaning the land, realm, or characteristic activity (i.e. enchantment) of the legendary people of folklore and romance called (in Old French) faie or fee (Modern French fée). This derived ultimately from Late Latin fata (one of the personified Fates, hence a guardian or tutelary spirit, hence a spirit in general); cf. Italian fata, Portuguese fada, Spanish hada of the same origin.
Fata, although it became a feminine noun in the Romance languages, was originally the neuter plural ("the Fates") of fatum, past
Hyenas or Hyaenas (from Greek "ὕαινα" - hýaina) are the animals of the family Hyaenidae ( /hɪˈɛnɨdɛ/) of suborder feliforms of the Carnivora. It is the fourth smallest biological family in the Carnivora (consisting of four species), and one of the smallest in the mammalia. Despite their low diversity, hyenas are unique and vital components to most African and some Asian ecosystems.
Although phylogenetically close to felines and viverrids, hyenas are behaviourally and morphologically similar to canines in several aspects (see Convergent evolution); both hyenas and canines are non-arboreal, cursorial hunters that catch prey with their teeth rather than claws. Both eat food quickly and may store it, and their calloused feet with large, blunt, non-retractable nails are adapted for running and making sharp turns. However, the hyenas' grooming, scent marking, defecating habits, mating and parental behaviour are consistent with the behaviour of other feliforms. Although long reputed to be cowardly scavengers, hyenas, especially spotted hyenas, kill as much as 95% of the food they eat, and have been known to drive off leopards or lionesses from their kills. Hyenas are primarily nocturnal
A mouse (plural: mice) is a small mammal belonging to the order of rodents, characteristically having a pointed snout, small rounded ears, and a long naked or almost hairless tail. The best known mouse species is the common house mouse (Mus musculus). It is also a popular pet. In some places, certain kinds of field mice are also common. This rodent is eaten by large birds such as hawks and eagles. They are known to invade homes for food and occasionally shelter.
The American white-footed mouse (Peromyscus leucopus) and the deer mouse (Peromyscus maniculatus), as well as other common species of mouse-like rodents around the world, also sometimes live in houses. These, however, are in other genera.
Cats, wild dogs, foxes, birds of prey, snakes and even certain kinds of arthropods have been known to prey heavily upon mice. Nevertheless, because of its remarkable adaptability to almost any environment, the mouse is one of the most successful mammalian genera living on Earth today.
Mice can at times be vermin, damaging and eating crops, causing structural damage and spreading diseases through their parasites and feces. In North America, breathing dust that has come in contact with mouse
An Ogre is a large humanoid creature in the Warhammer Fantasy fictional universe. They are based on the ogres of mythology.
Prior to the release in 2005 of Warhammer Armies: Ogre Kingdoms for Warhammer Fantasy Battles tabletop game Ogres appeared only as mercenaries or Auxiliaries to other armies. The Ogre Kingdoms book expanded the history and character of the Ogres and they can now be fielded as a single army of their own, although the option to use them as mercenaries in other armies remained. However, the option to field allies or use mercenaries in general has since been dropped from the core Warhammer rules, with the discontinuing of the Dogs of War and the Regiments of Renown. Furthermore, the release of the Ogre Kingdoms Army Book itself was controversial, as one already existing army, Wood Elves, had yet to be released at that time.
The ogre army differs from most other armies in Warhammer as it is composed mainly of monstrous Infantry (i.e. models mounted on larger bases which are significantly tougher than normal man-sized infantry, but fewer in number). This has proved popular with gamers who like to spend more time painting individual models than massed regiments,
Owls are a group of birds that belong to the order Strigiformes, constituting 200 extant bird of prey species. Most are solitary and nocturnal, with some exceptions (e.g., the Northern Hawk Owl). Owls hunt mostly small mammals, insects, and other birds, although a few species specialize in hunting fish. They are found in all regions of the Earth except Antarctica, most of Greenland and some remote islands. Though owls are typically solitary, the literary collective noun for a group of owls is a parliament. Owls are characterized by their small beaks and wide faces, and are divided into two families: the typical owls, Strigidae; and the barn-owls, Tytonidae.
Owls have large forward-facing eyes and ear-holes; a hawk-like beak; a flat face; and usually a conspicuous circle of feathers, a facial disc, around each eye. The feathers making up this disc can be adjusted in order to sharply focus sounds that come from varying distances onto the owls' asymmetrically placed ear cavities. Most birds of prey sport eyes on the sides of their heads, but the stereoscopic nature of the owl's forward-facing eyes permits the greater sense of depth perception necessary for low-light hunting. Although
Rabbits are small mammals in the family Leporidae of the order Lagomorpha, found in several parts of the world. There are eight different genera in the family classified as rabbits, including the European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus), cottontail rabbits (genus Sylvilagus; 13 species), and the Amami rabbit (Pentalagus furnessi, an endangered species on Amami Ōshima, Japan). There are many other species of rabbit, and these, along with pikas and hares, make up the order Lagomorpha. The male is called a buck and the female is a doe; a young rabbit is a kitten or kit.
Rabbit habitats include meadows, woods, forests, grasslands, deserts and wetlands. Rabbits live in groups, and the best known species, the European rabbit, lives in underground burrows, or rabbit holes. A group of burrows is called a warren.
More than half the world's rabbit population resides in North America. They are also native to southwestern Europe, Southeast Asia, Sumatra, some islands of Japan, and in parts of Africa and South America. They are not naturally found in most of Eurasia, where a number of species of hares are present. Rabbits first entered South America relatively recently, as part of the Great
The tiger shark, Galeocerdo cuvier, is a species of requiem shark and the only member of the genus Galeocerdo. Commonly known as sea tiger, the tiger shark is a relatively large macropredator, capable of attaining a length of over 5 m (16 ft). It is found in many tropical and temperate waters, and is especially common around central Pacific islands. Its name derives from the dark stripes down its body which resemble a tiger's pattern, which fade as the shark matures.
The tiger shark is a solitary, mostly nocturnal hunter. Its diet includes a wide variety of prey, ranging from crustaceans, fish, seals, birds, squid, turtles, and sea snakes to dolphins and even other smaller sharks. The tiger shark is considered a near threatened species due to finning and fishing by humans.
While the tiger shark is considered to be one of the sharks most dangerous to humans, the attack rate is low according to researchers. The tiger is second on the list of number of recorded attacks on humans, with the great white shark being first. They often visit shallow reefs, harbors and canals, creating the potential for encounter with humans.
The shark was first described by Peron and Lessueur in 1822, and
Albatrosses, of the biological family Diomedeidae, are large seabirds allied to the procellariids, storm-petrels and diving-petrels in the order Procellariiformes (the tubenoses). They range widely in the Southern Ocean and the North Pacific. They are absent from the North Atlantic, although fossil remains show they once occurred there too and occasional vagrants are found.
Albatrosses are among the largest of flying birds, and the great albatrosses (genus Diomedea) have the largest wingspans of any extant birds, reaching up to 12 feet. The albatrosses are usually regarded as falling into four genera, but there is disagreement over the number of species.
Albatrosses are highly efficient in the air, using dynamic soaring and slope soaring to cover great distances with little exertion. They feed on squid, fish and krill by either scavenging, surface seizing or diving. Albatrosses are colonial, nesting for the most part on remote oceanic islands, often with several species nesting together. Pair bonds between males and females form over several years, with the use of 'ritualised dances', and will last for the life of the pair. A breeding season can take over a year from laying to
Members of the genus Bison are large, even-toed ungulates within the subfamily Bovinae. Two extant and four extinct species are recognized. The surviving species are the American bison, also known as the American buffalo (although it is only distantly related to the true buffalo), Bison bison, found in North America, and the European bison, or wisent (Bison bonasus), found in Europe and the Caucasus. The North American species is composed of two subspecies, the plains bison, Bison bison bison, and the wood bison, Bison bison athabascae. While all bison species are usually grouped into their own genus, they are sometimes included in the closely related genus Bos, together with cattle, gaur, kouprey and yaks, with which bison have a limited ability to interbreed.
The American bison and the European wisent are the largest terrestrial animals in North America and Europe. Bison are good swimmers and can cross rivers over half a mile (1 km) wide. Bison are nomadic grazers and travel in herds. The bulls leave the herds of females at 2 or 3 years of age, and join a male herd which is generally smaller than the female herds. Mature bulls rarely travel alone. Both sexes get together for the
is a fictional ghost that appears in the Super Mario series of video games by Nintendo. Boos made their first appearance in Super Mario Bros. 3.
Physically, Boos resemble classical Halloween spooks. They are round, puffy and balloon-like in appearance, and usually sport a pair of sharp vampirical canine teeth. Boos have beady eyes and a variety of facial expressions comparable to those of classical jack o' lantern. Boos have flaps for arms as well as short tails. There are many Boo variations, as they vary in color and size. The most common Boo type is a generic, milky-white Boo, but other Boos can come in hues of blue, green, pink, orange, red and black. One type of Boo, found in Paper Mario, is the Dark Boo, which is violet with glowing orange eyes and a blue tongue. Even though they are ghosts, there has been some controversy as to whether Boos are true ghosts or a species of ghost-like creatures. Judging from their dialogue in Super Mario 64, it is hinted that they are in fact dead Mushroom Kingdom residents. However, this has been contradicted in more recent games, mostly when one takes it into consideration that the ghosts of Mushroom Kingdom citizens have been seen, and
The gray wolf or grey wolf (Canis lupus) is a species of canid native to the wilderness and remote areas of North America, Eurasia, and North Africa. It is the largest member of its family, with males averaging 43–45 kg (95–99 lb), and females 36–38.5 kg (79–85 lb). It is similar in general appearance and proportions to a German shepherd, or sled dog, but has a larger head, narrower chest, longer legs, straighter tail and bigger paws. Its winter fur is long and bushy, and is usually mottled gray in color, though it can range from nearly pure white, red, or brown to black.
Within the genus Canis, the gray wolf represents a more specialised and progressive form than its smaller cousins (the coyote and golden jackal), as demonstrated by its morphological adaptations to hunting large prey, its more gregarious nature and its highly advanced expressive behavior. It is a social animal, travelling in nuclear families consisting of a mated pair, accompanied by the pair's adult offspring. The gray wolf is typically an apex predator throughout its range, with only humans and tigers posing a serious threat to it. It feeds primarily on large ungulates, though it will also eat smaller animals,
Parrots, also known as psittacines ( /ˈsɪtəsaɪnz/), are birds of the roughly 372 species in 86 genera that make up the order Psittaciformes, found in most tropical and subtropical regions. The order is subdivided into three superfamilies: the Psittacoidea ('true' parrots), the Cacatuoidea (cockatoos) and the Strigopoidea (New Zealand parrots). Parrots have a generally pantropical distribution with several species inhabiting temperate regions in the Southern Hemisphere as well. The greatest diversity of parrots is found in South America and Australasia.
Characteristic features of parrots include a strong, curved bill, an upright stance, strong legs, and clawed zygodactyl feet. Many parrots are vividly coloured, and some are multi-coloured. The plumage of cockatoos ranges from mostly white to mostly black, with a mobile crest of feathers on the tops of their heads. Most parrots exhibit little or no sexual dimorphism. They form the most variably sized bird order in terms of length.
The most important components of most parrots' diets are seeds, nuts, fruit, buds and other plant material. A few species sometimes eat animals and carrion, while the lories and lorikeets are specialised
The Siberian Husky (Russian: сибирский хаски, "Siberian husky") is a medium-size, dense-coat working dog breed that originated in north-eastern Siberia. The breed belongs to the Spitz genetic family. It is recognisable by its thickly furred double coat, sickle tail, erect triangular ears, and distinctive markings.
Huskies are an active, energetic, and resilient breed whose ancestors came from the extremely cold and harsh environment of the Siberian Arctic. Siberian Huskies were bred by the Chukchi of Northeastern Asia to pull heavy loads long distances through difficult conditions. The dogs were imported into Alaska during the Nome Gold Rush and later spread into the United States and Canada. They were initially sent to Alaska and Canada as sled dogs but rapidly acquired the status of family pets and show dogs. Because of its efficiency as a working breed, most huskies are bred to be able to withstand long work days on little amounts of food. They can travel 40 miles per day.
The Siberian Husky, Samoyed, and Alaskan Malamute are all breeds directly descended from the original "sled dog." Recent DNA analysis confirms that this is one of the oldest breeds of dog. The term "husky" is
Characters of This Species:Lady of the Green Kirtle
Snakes are elongate, legless, carnivorous reptiles of the suborder Serpentes that can be distinguished from legless lizards by their lack of eyelids and external ears. Like all squamates, snakes are ectothermic, amniote vertebrates covered in overlapping scales. Many species of snakes have skulls with many more joints than their lizard ancestors, enabling them to swallow prey much larger than their heads with their highly mobile jaws. To accommodate their narrow bodies, snakes' paired organs (such as kidneys) appear one in front of the other instead of side by side, and most have only one functional lung. Some species retain a pelvic girdle with a pair of vestigial claws on either side of the cloaca.
Living snakes are found on every continent except Antarctica, in the Pacific and Indian Oceans, and on most smaller land masses — exceptions include some large islands, such as Ireland and New Zealand, and many small islands of the Atlantic and central Pacific. More than 20 families are currently recognized, comprising about 500 genera and about 3,400 species. They range in size from the tiny, 10 cm-long thread snake to the Reticulated python of up to 8.7 meters (29 ft) in length. The
In Greek mythology, the Gorgon (plural: Gorgons) (Greek: Γοργών or Γοργώ Gorgon/Gorgo) was a terrifying female creature. The name derives from the Greek word gorgós, which means "dreadful." While descriptions of Gorgons vary across Greek literature and occurs in the earliest examples of Greek literature, the term commonly refers to any of three sisters who had hair of living, venomous snakes, and a horrifying visage that turned those who beheld her to stone. Traditionally, while two of the Gorgons were immortal, Stheno and Euryale, their sister Medusa was not, and she was slain by the mythical demigod and hero Perseus.
Gorgons were a popular image in Greek mythology, appearing in the earliest of written records of Ancient Greek religious beliefs such as those of Homer, which may date to as early as 1194–1184 BC. Because of their legendary and powerful gaze that could turn one to stone, images of the Gorgons were put upon objects and buildings for protection. An image of a Gorgon holds the primary location at the pediment of the temple at Corfu, which is the oldest stone pediment in Greece, and is dated to c. 600 BC.
The concept of the Gorgon is at least as old in classical Greek
The Beagle is a breed of small to medium-sized dog. A member of the Hound Group, it is similar in appearance to the Foxhound, but smaller, with shorter legs and longer, softer ears. Beagles are scent hounds, developed primarily for tracking hare, rabbit, and other game. They have a great sense of smell and tracking instinct that sees them employed as detection dogs for prohibited agricultural imports and foodstuffs in quarantine around the world. Beagles are intelligent, and are popular as pets because of their size, even temper, and lack of inherited health problems. These characteristics also make them the dog of choice for animal testing.
Although beagle-type dogs have existed for over 2,000 years, the modern breed was developed in Great Britain around the 1830s from several breeds, including the Talbot Hound, the North Country Beagle, the Southern Hound, and possibly the Harrier.
Beagles have been depicted in popular culture since Elizabethan times in literature and paintings, and more recently in film, television and comic books. Snoopy of the comic strip Peanuts has been promoted as "the world's most famous beagle".
Dogs of similar size and purpose to the modern Beagle can be
In the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy roleplaying game, the cockatrice is a small avian magical beast. Any creature that a cockatrice bites can be permanently turned to stone.
A cockatrice is not particularly intelligent, and is always neutral in alignment.
The cockatrice is based on medieval alchemical folklore, which believed they came from a snake or a toad hatching a rooster's egg. The cockatrice is sometimes called a basilisk in ancient mythos.
The cockatrice first appeared in the original Dungeons & Dragons set (1974). Cockatrices also appeared in the supplement Eldritch Wizardry (1976).
The cockatrice appeared in the D&D Basic Set (1977), D&D Expert Set (1981, 1983), D&D Companion Rules (1984), and Dungeons & Dragons Rules Cyclopedia (1991).
The cockatrice appeared in first edition Advanced Dungeons & Dragons in the original Monster Manual (1977). The creature was expanded on in Dragon #95 (March 1985).
The cockatrice appeared in second edition Advanced Dungeons & Dragons in Monstrous Compendium Volume One (1989), reprinted in the Monstrous Manual (1993).
The cockatrice appeared in the third edition Monster Manual (2000), and the version 3.5 Monster Manual (2003).
Fimir are a fantasy race created by Graeme Davis and Jes Goodwin at the end of the 1980s for Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay (WFRP) and the 3rd edition of Warhammer Fantasy Battle (WFB).
Inspired by the Fomorians of Celtic myth, they are depicted as humanoid, cyclopean creatures with barbed tails and beak-like snouts, with skins that varied from a dark green to a muddy brown colour. They are described as being part Daemon.
The Fimir inhabit the wetlands of the Warhammer world, typically within crudely constructed fortifications resembling nothing more than a pile of rocks. From these locations, the Fimir raid the homes of humans, taking captives for daemonic sacrifices. The Fimir loathe sunlight, and are followed by wreaths of mist to shield them from it, and their homes are always shrouded by it.
Fimir society is divided into a caste system, consisting of Meargh, the Dirach, the warriors, and the Shearl. The Meargh - also known as witch-hags - are the leaders of Fimir colonies, as well as the only females. A Meargh would typically also be a very powerful user of magic. The Dirach - described as "daemon-friends" - are a caste of wizards specialising in the worshipping of Daemons. The
The hippopotamus (Hippopotamus amphibius), or hippo, from the ancient Greek for "river horse" (ἱπποπόταμος), is a large, mostly herbivorous mammal in sub-Saharan Africa, and one of only two extant species in the family Hippopotamidae (the other is the pygmy hippopotamus). After the elephant and rhinoceros, the hippopotamus is the third largest land mammal and the heaviest extant artiodactyl. Despite their physical resemblance to pigs and other terrestrial even-toed ungulates, their closest living relatives are cetaceans (whales, porpoises, etc.) from which they diverged about 55 million years ago. The common ancestor of whales and hippos split from other even-toed ungulates around 60 million years ago. The earliest known hippopotamus fossils, belonging to the genus Kenyapotamus in Africa, date to around 16 million years ago.
The hippopotamus is semi-aquatic, inhabiting rivers, lakes and mangrove swamps, where territorial bulls preside over a stretch of river and groups of 5 to 30 females and young. During the day they remain cool by staying in the water or mud; reproduction and childbirth both occur in water. They emerge at dusk to graze on grass. While hippopotamuses rest near
The Narn are a fictional alien race in the universe of the Babylon 5 television series. Their homeworld is also called Narn.
Narn is the homeworld of the Narn and the Narn Regime. Its day is 31 hours long. Prior to the Centauri's first invasion, Narn was a healthy green planet. Now it has the look of a slightly more habitable Mars. The surface temperature can fluctuate by at least 60 degrees Fahrenheit on any given day. Before the Centauri invasion the planet was dominated by primordial jungles and forests, teeming with animal life. Craggy mountains and small, landlocked seas covered the rest of the globe. One of the most revered locations on Narn is the G'Quon mountain range which was once home to the vicious On'Vik and herds of wild Dar and horned beasts called Natok that stomp and make noise when angered or disturbed.
However, following the two Centauri occupations the Narn homeworld now is fairly barren, with a thin atmosphere and low humidity. Much of the land is a desolate rose-copper desert, as the Centauri's first occupation decimated the environment; very few areas of original forest and jungle remain. Although the Narn reclaimed much of their planet for agriculture, they
Sea witches have been featured in European folklore for centuries. Traditionally, sea witches were witches who appeared among sailors or others involved in the seafaring trade. Sea witches used witchcraft related to the moon, tides, and the weather, or were believed to have complete control over the seas. In some folklore, sea witches are described as phantoms or ghosts who have the power to control the fates of ships and seamen.
As the name implies, sea witches are believed to be able to control many aspects of nature relating to water, most commonly an ocean or sea. However, in more modern times, sea witches can also practice witchcraft on or near any source of water: lakes, rivers, bath tubs, or even simply a bowl of salt water.
In addition to their powers over water, sea witches could often control the wind. A common feature of many tales was a rope tied into three knots, which witches often sold to sailors to aid them on a voyage. Pulling the first knot could yield a gentle, southeasterly wind, while pulling two could generate a strong northerly wind.
Sea witches often improvise on what they have, rather than making purchases from a store or from another person. Common tools
Found in fictional universe:The Sacred Band of Stepsons universe
Tempus's Sacred Band of Stepsons began under the aegis of Abarsis, the Slaughter Priest, called Stepson, who brought Tempus two Trôs horses and a commission from the storm gods themselves. Abarsis, like NIkodemos and others, has Nisibisi mageblood in his veins and numinous proclivities. Since his death in Tempus's service, Abarsis has become the patron shade of the Sacred Band and comes to Earth with warnings, or when Stepsons die in battle, to take their souls to the afterlife.
Dralasites are a fictional extraterrestrial race that have been featured as player character options in several role-playing games (RPGs). In each incarnation they have been described as short, rubbery, gray amoeboid creatures capable of changing their form to a limited extent by extending and retracting pseudopods.
These aliens first appeared as part of the Star Frontiers science fiction role-playing game published in 1982 by TSR, Inc. as well as the closely related Alpha Dawn strategy game that soon followed.
Gogol, a Dralasite child, appeared in the Star Rangers and the Spy installment of Fantasy Forest gamebooks in the same style as the Choose Your Own Adventure adventure series. Gogol was one of several compatriots of the juvenile protagonist and was depicted in the book's cover art.
In the 1990s, Dralasites were introduced as part of that same company's Spelljammer game setting, a somewhat steampunk fantasy approach to space exploration for Advanced Dungeons & Dragons.
In 2004, Dralasites were included in d20 Future, a science fiction supplement to the d20 Modern RPG published by Wizards of the Coast.
Dralasite are about 1.3 meters tall and 1 meter wide. They weigh about
The Great Horned Owl, (Bubo virginianus), also known as the Tiger Owl, is a large owl native to the Americas. It is an adaptable bird with a vast range and is the most widely distributed true owl in the Americas.
Great Horned Owls are the heaviest extant owl in Central and South America and are the second heaviest owl in North America, after the closely related but very different looking Snowy Owl (B. scandiacus). They range in length from 43–64 cm (17–25 in) and have a wingspan of 91–153 cm (36–60 in). Females are invariably somewhat larger than males. An average adult is around 55 cm (22 in) long with a 124 cm (49 in) wingspan and weighing about 1.4 kg (3.1 lb). Depending on subspecies, Great Horned Owls can weigh from 0.6 to 2.6 kg (1.3 to 5.7 lb). Among standard measurements, the tail measures 17.5–25 cm (6.9–9.8 in) long, the wing chord measures 31.3–40 cm (12.3–16 in), the tarsal length is 5.4–8 cm (2.1–3.1 in) and the bill is 3.3–5.2 cm (1.3–2.0 in).
There is considerable variation in plumage coloration but not in body shape. These are heavily built, barrel-shaped birds, and have large heads and broad wings. Adults have large ear tufts and are the only very large owl in
The guinea pig (Cavia porcellus), also called the cavy, is a species of rodent belonging to the family Caviidae and the genus Cavia. Despite their common name, these animals are not in the pig family, nor are they from Guinea. They originated in the Andes, and earlier studies based on biochemistry and hybridization suggested they are domesticated descendants of a closely related species of cavy such as Cavia aperea, C. fulgida, or C. tschudii and, therefore, do not exist naturally in the wild. Recent studies applying molecular markers, in addition to studying the skull and skeletal morphology of current and mummified animals, revealed that the ancestor is most likely Cavia tschudii.
The guinea pig plays an important role in the folk culture of many Indigenous South American groups, especially as a food source, but also in folk medicine and in community religious ceremonies. Since the 1960s, efforts have been made to increase consumption of the animal outside South America.
In Western societies, the guinea pig has enjoyed widespread popularity as a household pet since its introduction by European traders in the 16th century. Their docile nature, their responsiveness to handling and
Lakitu, known in Japan as Jugem (ジュゲム, Jugemu), is a video game creature in the Mario franchise. Created by Shigeru Miyamoto, it first appeared in the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) video game Super Mario Bros., where it dropped enemies called Spinies on the stage. It has a striped green shell, wears aviator goggles, and rides around in a smiling cloud. It has since appeared in several main Mario titles since, as well as Mario spin-off titles, notably the Mario Kart series where it acts as the race official, and an unlockable playable character in Mario Kart 7. He has appeared in non-Mario titles, including the Super Smash Bros. series, specifically Super Smash Bros. Brawl. His most recent appearance in the Mario series was in New Super Mario Bros. 2.
Since appearing in Super Mario Bros., Lakitu has received somewhat positive reception. It has appeared in the form of several kinds of merchandise, including on t-shirts, stickers, and a dry erase board. While he has been regarded as one of the best Mario villains by GameDaily, he has been decried by several editors for being a troublesome enemy, including 1UP.com editor Jeremy Parish and G4TV editor Andrew Pfister.
Lakitu is a
The mountain goat (Oreamnos americanus), also known as the Rocky Mountain goat, is a large-hoofed mammal found only in North America. Despite its vernacular name, it is not a member of Capra, the genus of true goats. It stays at high elevations and is a sure-footed climber, often resting on rocky cliffs that predators cannot access.
The mountain goat is an even-toed ungulate of the order Artiodactyla and the family Bovidae that includes antelopes, gazelles, and cattle. It belongs to the subfamily Caprinae (goat-antelopes), along with thirty-two other species including true goats, sheep, the chamois, and the musk ox. The mountain goat is the only species in the genus Oreamnos. The name Oreamnos is derived from the Greek term oros (stem ore-) "mountain" (or, alternatively, oreas "mountain nymph") and the word amnos "lamb".
Both male and female mountain goats have beards, short tails, and long black horns, 15–28 centimetres (5.9–11 in) in length, which contain yearly growth rings. They are protected from the elements by their woolly white double coats. The fine, dense wool of their undercoats is covered by an outer layer of longer, hollow hairs. In spring, mountain goats moult by
A pig is any of the animals in the genus Sus, within the Suidae family of even-toed ungulates. Pigs include the domestic pig, its ancestor the wild boar, and several other wild relatives. Pigs are omnivores and are highly social and intelligent animals.
A typical pig has a large head with a long snout which is strengthened by a special prenasal bone and by a disk of cartilage at the tip. The snout is used to dig into the soil to find food and is a very acute sense organ. There are four hoofed toes on each trotter (foot), with the two larger central toes bearing most of the weight, but the outer two also being used in soft ground.
The dental formula of adult pigs is , giving a total of 44 teeth. The rear teeth are adapted for crushing. In the male the canine teeth form tusks, which grow continuously and are sharpened by constantly being ground against each other.
With around 1 billion individuals alive at any time, the domesticated pig is one of the most numerous large mammals on the planet.
The ancestor of the domesticated pig is the wild boar, which is one of the most numerous and widespread large mammals. Its many subspecies are native to all but the harshest climes of
The polar bear (Ursus maritimus) is a bear native largely within the Arctic Circle encompassing the Arctic Ocean, its surrounding seas and surrounding land masses. It is the world's largest land carnivore and also the largest bear, together with the omnivorous Kodiak Bear, which is approximately the same size. A boar (adult male) weighs around 350–680 kg (770–1,500 lb), while a sow (adult female) is about half that size. Although it is closely related to the brown bear, it has evolved to occupy a narrower ecological niche, with many body characteristics adapted for cold temperatures, for moving across snow, ice, and open water, and for hunting the seals which make up most of its diet. Although most polar bears are born on land, they spend most of their time at sea. Their scientific name means "maritime bear", and derives from this fact. Polar bears can hunt their preferred food of seals from the edge of sea ice, often living off fat reserves when no sea ice is present.
The polar bear is classified as a vulnerable species, with eight of the nineteen polar bear subpopulations in decline. For decades, large scale hunting raised international concern for the future of the species but
A Borg is a collective proper noun for a fictional alien race in the productions of the science fiction series Star Trek. The Borg are a collection of species that have turned into cybernetic organisms functioning as drones of the collective the hive, pseudo-race, dwelling in the Star Trek universe. The Borg take other species by force into the collective and connect them to "the hive mind"; the act is called assimilation and entails violence, abductions, and injections of cybernetic implants. The Borg's ultimate goal is "achieving perfection".
Aside from being the main threat in Star Trek: First Contact, the Borg play major roles in The Next Generation and Voyager television series, primarily as an invasion threat to the United Federation of Planets, and serve as the way home to the Alpha Quadrant for isolated Federation starship Voyager. The Borg have become a symbol in popular culture for any juggernaut against which "resistance is futile".
The Borg manifest as cybernetically-enhanced humanoid drones of multiple species, organized as an interconnected collective, the decisions of which are made by a hive mind, linked by subspace radio. The Borg inhabit a vast region of space in
Cobra ( pronunciation (help·info)) is any of various species of venomous snakes usually belonging to the family Elapidae, most of which can expand their neck ribs to form a widened hood. Not all snakes commonly referred to as cobras are of the same genus, or even of the same family. The name is short for cobra capo or capa Snake, which is Portuguese for "snake with hood", or "hood-snake". When disturbed, most of these snakes can rear up and spread their necks (or hoods) in a characteristic threat display. A favorite of snake charmers, cobras are found from southern Africa, through southern Asia, to some of the islands of Southeast Asia.
Cobra may refer to:
Naja, also known as typical cobras (with the characteristic ability to raise the front quarters of their bodies off the ground and flatten their necks in a threatening gesture), a group of venomous elapids found in Africa and Asia
The king cobra is the world’s largest venomous snake, with an average length of 12 feet but known to grow up to 18.5 feet. While it preys chiefly on other snakes, the king cobra is highly aggressive, extremely fast and agile, and injects a larger amount of venom per bite (as much as 600 mg) than most
In Games Workshop's Warhammer Fantasy fictional universe, The Dwarfs are a race of short, stout humanoids very similar to the dwarves of Middle-earth and those of Dungeons & Dragons. Dwarfs in the Warhammer setting are proud warriors highly driven by honour.
Dwarfs reside mainly in the hills and mountains of the "Old World" where they have their strongholds. Their empire once ran as a series of holds throughout the mountain ranges joined by tunnels. Since the peak some strongholds have fallen and the tunnel ways lost so the strongholds are more isolated. The loss of the holds has been attributed to Orcs and other Greenskins or to the Skaven. There is a reputed "lost" hold in The Southlands and to the north the Dwarfs there in Norsca have become less civilized and more separate from the main - the largest hold there is Karak Drak. Substantial numbers of Dwarfs have settled in the human nations of the Old World; particularly the Empire where their technical skills are appreciated and some serve in the Imperial armies. These expatriate dwarfs were once available as regiments within the Imperial Army but were removed in the 4th edition of the Empire list.
The dwarfs have various forges
Ewoks are a fictional species of bipeds in the Star Wars universe. In the series, they are a species of teddy-bear-like hunter-gatherers that inhabit the forest moon of Endor. The Ewoks live in various tree-huts and primitive dwellings. They first appeared in the film Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (1983). They have since been featured in two made-for-television films, Caravan of Courage: An Ewok Adventure and Ewoks: The Battle for Endor, as well as an animated series and several books and games.
George Lucas created the Ewoks because he wanted Return of the Jedi to feature a tribe of some primitive creatures that bring down the technological Empire. He had originally intended the scenes to be set on the Wookiee home planet, but as the film series evolved, the Wookiees became technologically skilled. Lucas designed a new species instead, and says his approach was simple: Wookiees are tall, so he made Ewoks short. The Ewok are named after the Miwok, a Native American tribe, indigenous to the Redwood forest in which the Endor scenes were filmed for Return of the Jedi, near the San Rafael location of Lucas' Skywalker Ranch. In the film, the name "Ewok" is never actually
Gorillas comprise the eponymous genus Gorilla, the largest extant genus of primates. They are ground-dwelling, predominantly herbivorous apes that inhabit the forests of central Africa. The genus is divided into two species and either four or five subspecies. The DNA of gorillas is highly similar to that of a human, from 95–99% depending on what is counted, and they are the next closest living relatives to humans after the bonobo and common chimpanzee.
Gorillas' natural habitats cover tropical or subtropical forests in Africa. Although their range covers a small percentage of Africa, gorillas cover a wide range of elevations. The mountain gorilla inhabits the Albertine Rift montane cloud forests of the Virunga Volcanoes, ranging in altitude from 2,200–4,300 metres (7,200–14,100 ft). Lowland gorillas live in dense forests and lowland swamps and marshes as low as sea level, with western lowland gorillas living in Central West African countries and eastern lowland gorillas living in the Democratic Republic of the Congo near its border with Rwanda.
The American physician and missionary Thomas Staughton Savage and naturalist Jeffries Wyman first described the western gorilla (they
An Orphnoch (オルフェノク, Orufenoku) is a fictional human evolutionary stage and the main antangonist of the 2003 Japanese television series Kamen Rider 555. The Orphnoch are supposed to be the next stage in human evolution. They are stronger, tougher, and faster, with various other special abilities. The term Orphnoch is the combination of the names of the Greek mythological figure Orpheus and the biblical figure Enoch.
There are two types of Orphnoch in the most of series: the Original Orphnoch who are "born" when a certain human suffers a violent death and 'resurrected' into an Orphnoch and Sired Orphnoch that are created when certain humans survive being attacked by an Orphnoch and become ones themselves, though weaker than the Original Orphnoch. But the most unique of type that appear in the series finale are the Evolved Orphnoch, the first of this type is the Orphnoch King, which are genetically perfect to the point of being unable to resume human form. An Orphnoch King can remove the genetic flaw from other Orphnoch, evolving them as well at the cost of their humanity.
All Orphnoch have their senses enhanced to a superhuman level, able to hear, smell or see great distances,
In Greek mythology, a satyr (UK /ˈsætər/, US /ˈseɪtər/, Greek σάτυρος saturos) is one of a troop of male companions of Pan and Dionysus. He has horselike features. Roman Mythology identifies the Greek satyr with its faun being half-man, half-goat. "Satyresses" were a late invention of poets — that roamed the woods and mountains. In myths they are often associated with pipe-playing.
The satyrs' chief was Silenus, a minor deity associated (like Hermes and Priapus) with fertility. These characters can be found in the only complete remaining satyr play, Cyclops, by Euripides, and the fragments of Sophocles' Ichneutae (Tracking Satyrs). The satyr play was a short, lighthearted tailpiece performed after each trilogy of tragedies in Athenian festivals honoring Dionysus. There is not enough evidence to determine whether the satyr play regularly drew on the same myths as those dramatized in the tragedies that preceded. The groundbreaking tragic playwright Aeschylus is said to have been especially loved for his satyr plays, but none of them have survived.
Attic painted vases depict mature satyrs as being strongly built with flat noses, large pointed ears, long curly hair, and full beards,
Found in fictional universe:The Sacred Band of Stepsons universe
MacDonald "Mac" Gargan is a fictional character that appears in comic books published by Marvel Comics. During his career as a villain of Spider-Man's, he originally appeared as the most well-known incarnation of Scorpion, bonded with the symbiote to become the third incarnation of Venom, and takes a serum to control the symbiote to pose as the third incarnation of Spider-Man.
The character was created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko. Gargan first appeared in The Amazing Spider-Man #19 (1964) and first appeared as the Scorpion in Amazing Spider-Man #20 (July, 1964). Years later, he became the third incarnation of Venom in Marvel Knights: Spider-Man #10 (2005) and the third Spider-Man in Dark Avengers #1 (2009).
He appeared as a regular character in the Dark Avengers series from issue #1 (March 2009) through issue #16 (June 2010). Mac Gargan appeared in the character's first own 4-issue limited series, Dark Reign: Sinister Spider-Man. The comic was released in June 2009 and was written by Brian Reed, with art by Chris Bachalo.
Writer Dan Slott has stated that Mac Gargan will return as the original Scorpion, in an upcoming arc of The Amazing Spider-Man.
Mac Gargan was a private
Sponges are animals of the phylum Porifera ( /pɒˈrɪfərə/; meaning "pore bearer"). They are multicellular organisms which have bodies full of pores and channels allowing water to circulate through them, consisting of jelly-like mesohyl sandwiched between two thin layers of cells. Sponges have unspecialized cells that can transform into other types and which often migrate between the main cell layers and the mesohyl in the process. Sponges do not have nervous, digestive or circulatory systems. Instead, most rely on maintaining a constant water flow through their bodies to obtain food, oxygen and remove wastes.
Sponges are like other animals in that they are multicellular, heterotrophic, lack cell walls and produce sperm cells. Unlike other animals, they lack true tissues and organs, and have no body symmetry. The shapes of their bodies are adapted for maximal efficiency of water flow through the central cavity, where it deposits nutrients, and leaves through a hole called the osculum. Many sponges have internal skeletons of spongin and/or spicules of calcium carbonate or silica. All sponges are sessile aquatic animals. Although there are freshwater species, the great majority are
Squirrels belong to a large family of small or medium-sized rodents called the Sciuridae. The family includes tree squirrels, ground squirrels, chipmunks, marmots (including woodchucks), flying squirrels, and prairie dogs. Squirrels are indigenous to the Americas, Eurasia, and Africa, and have been introduced to Australia. The earliest known squirrels date from the Eocene and are most closely related to the mountain beaver and to the dormouse among living species.
The word "squirrel", first specified in 1327, comes from Anglo-Norman esquirel from the Old French escurel, the reflex of a Latin word sciurus. This Latin word was borrowed from the Ancient Greek word σκίουρος, skiouros, which means shadow-tailed, referring to the bushy appendage possessed by many of its members.
The native Old English word, ācweorna, survived only into Middle English (as aquerne) before being replaced. The Old English word is of Common Germanic origin, with cognates such as German Eichhorn, Norwegian ekorn, Dutch eekhoorn, Swedish ekorre and Danish egern.
Squirrels are generally small animals, ranging in size from the African pygmy squirrel at 7–10 cm (2.8–3.9 in) in length and just 10 g (0.35 oz) in
An alligator is a crocodilian in the genus Alligator of the family Alligatoridae. There are two living alligator species: the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) and the Chinese alligator (Alligator sinensis). In addition, several extinct species of alligator are known from fossil remains. Alligators first appeared during the Oligocene epoch about 37 million years ago.
The name alligator is an anglicized form of el lagarto, the Spanish term for "lizard", which early Spanish explorers and settlers in Florida called the alligator.
A large adult American alligator's weight and length is 800 pounds (360 kg) and 13 feet (4.0 m) long, but can grow to 14.5 feet (4.4 m) long and weigh over 1,000 pounds (450 kg). The largest ever recorded was found in Louisiana and measured 19 feet 2 inches (5.84 m). The Chinese alligator is smaller, rarely exceeding 7 feet (2.1 m) in length. Alligators have an average of 75 teeth.
There is no measured average lifespan for an alligator. In 1937, a one year-old specimen was brought to the Belgrade Zoo in Serbia from Germany. It is now 76 years old. Another specimen, Čabulītis, in Riga Zoo, Latvia died in 2007 being more than 75
Badgers are short-legged omnivores in the weasel family, Mustelidae. The 11 species of badger are grouped in three subfamilies: Melinae (9 Eurasian badgers), Mellivorinae (the ratel) and Taxideinae (the American badger). The Asiatic Stink badgers of the genus Mydaus were formerly included within Melinae (and thus Mustelidae), but recent genetic evidence indicates these are actually members of the skunk family, placing them in the taxonomic family Mephitidae.
Badgers include the species in the genera Meles, Arctonyx, Taxidea and Mellivora. Their lower jaws are articulated to the upper by means of transverse condyles firmly locked into long cavities of the skull, so dislocation of the jaw is all but impossible. This enables the badgers to maintain their hold with the utmost tenacity, but limits jaw movement to hinging open and shut, or sliding from side to side without the twisting movement possible for the jaws of most mammals.
Badgers have rather short, fat bodies, with short legs built for digging. They have elongated weasel-like heads with small ears. Their tails vary in length depending on species; the stink badger has a very short tail, while the ferret badger's tail can be 18
In J. R. R. Tolkien's legendarium, Elves are one of the races that inhabit a fictional Earth, often called Middle-earth, and set in the remote past. They appear in The Hobbit and in The Lord of the Rings, but their complex history is described more fully in The Silmarillion. Tolkien had been writing about Elves long before he published The Hobbit.
The modern English word elf derives from the Old English word ælf (which has cognates in all other Germanic languages). Numerous types of elves appear in Germanic mythology, the West Germanic concept appears to have come to differ from the Scandinavian notion in the early Middle Ages, and Anglo-Saxon concept diverged even further, possibly under Celtic influence. Tolkien would make it clear in a letter that his Elves differ from those "of the better known lore", referring to Scandinavian mythology.
By 1915 when Tolkien was writing his first elven poems, the words elf, fairy and gnome had many divergent and contradictory associations. Tolkien had been gently warned against using the term 'fairy', which John Garth supposes may have been due to the word becoming increasingly used to indicate homosexuality.
The fairy had been taken up by as a
The Phasmatodea (sometimes called Phasmida or Phasmatoptera) are an order of insects, whose members are variously known as stick insects (in Europe and Australasia), walking sticks or stick-bugs (in the United States and Canada), phasmids, ghost insects and leaf insects (generally the family Phylliidae). The ordinal name is derived from the Ancient Greek φάσμα phasma, meaning an apparition or phantom, and refers to the resemblance of many species to sticks or leaves. Their natural camouflage can make them extremely difficult to spot. Phasmatodea can be found all over the world in warmer zones, especially the tropics and subtropics. The greatest diversity is found in Southeast Asia and South America, followed by Australia. Phasmids also have a considerable presence in the continental United States, mainly in the Southeast.
Phasmids can be relatively large, ranging from 1 inch to over a foot in length. Females of the genus Phobaeticus are the world's longest insects, measuring up to 56.7 centimetres (22.3 in) in total length in the case of Phobaeticus chani, including the outstretched legs. Females of the species Heteropteryx dilatata are the heaviest known phasmids, possibly
True flies are insects of the order Diptera (from the Greek di = two, and ptera = wings). Their most obvious distinction from other orders of insects is that a typical fly possesses a pair of flight wings on the mesothorax and a pair of halteres, derived from the hind wings, on the metathorax. (Some species of flies are exceptional in that they are secondarily flightless). The only other order of insects bearing two true, functional wings plus any form of halteres are the Strepsiptera, and in contrast to the flies, the Strepsiptera bear their halteres on the mesothorax and their flight wings on the metathorax.
The presence of a single pair of patent, metathoracic flight wings distinguishes most true flies from other insects with "fly" in their names, such as mayflies, dragonflies, damselflies, stoneflies, whiteflies, fireflies, alderflies, dobsonflies, snakeflies, sawflies, caddisflies, butterflies or scorpionflies. However, some true flies have become secondarily wingless, for example many members of the superfamily Hippoboscoidea and some species that are inquilines in social insect colonies.
Some authors draw a distinction in writing the common names of insects. True flies are
Lizards are a widespread group of squamate reptiles, with more than 5600 species , ranging across all continents except Antarctica, as well as most oceanic island chains. The group, traditionally recognized as the suborder Lacertilia, is defined as all extant members of the Lepidosauria (reptiles with overlapping scales), which are neither sphenodonts (i.e., tuatara) nor snakes – they form an evolutionary grade. While the snakes are recognized as falling phylogenetically within the Toxicofera clade from which they evolved, the sphenodonts are the sister group to the squamates, the larger monophyletic group, which includes both the lizards and the snakes.
Lizards typically have feet and external ears, while snakes lack both of these characteristics. However, because they are defined negatively as excluding snakes, lizards have no unique distinguishing characteristic as a group. Lizards and snakes share a movable quadrate bone, distinguishing them from the sphenodonts, which have more primitive and solid diapsid skulls. Many lizards can detach their tails to escape from predators, an act called autotomy, but this ability is not shared by all lizards. Vision, including color vision,
Opisthobranchs ( /ɵˈpɪsθəbræŋks/) are a large and diverse group of specialized complex marine gastropods previously united under Opisthobranchia within the Heterobranchia, but no longer considered to represent a monophyletic grouping. Euopisthobrancha is a collection of opisthobranchs that is monophyletic, but this group leaves out some "traditional" opisthobranchs.
The Opisthobranchia includes a number of species in the order Cephalaspidea (bubble shells and headshield slugs), the sacoglossans, the anaspidean sea hares, the pelagic sea angels, the sea butterflies, and many families of Nudibranchia.
Opisthobranch means "gills behind" (and to the right of the heart). In contrast, Prosobranch means gills in front (of the heart). Opisthobranchs are characterized by two pairs of tentacles and a single gill behind and to the right of the heart.
Opisthobranchia are known from as early as the Carboniferous.
Under the old classification system by Johannes Thiele in 1931 Gastropoda were divided into the Prosobranchia, Pulmonata and Opisthobranchia. The latter two were later combined into a single order.
It is speculated that the Opisthobranchia may be paraphyletic, and may have given rise
The Asgard are a highly advanced, fictional extraterrestrial race in the science fiction series Stargate SG-1 and Stargate Atlantis. They are first mentioned in the episode "Thor's Hammer", and first seen in "Thor's Chariot". In the series, the Asgard gave rise to Norse mythology on Earth, as well as accounts of the Roswell "Greys". Due to their technological prowess, the Asgard are critical allies in Earth's fight against the Goa'uld, and later the Ori. The Asgard characters on the show are realized through a combination of puppets and computer-generated imagery.
The episode "The Fifth Race" establishes that the Asgard inhabit the galaxy of Ida, and that they were once part of an alliance of four great races with the Ancients, Nox, and Furlings. In ancient times, the Asgard visited Earth, posing as the gods of Norse mythology. Norse legends tell of how they protected the humans against the "Etins" (Goa'uld). The Asgard protect a number of planets in the Milky Way from Goa'uld attack under the Protected Planets Treaty. In the time of Stargate SG-1, the Asgard are a dying race. Having lost the capacity for sexual reproduction, they perpetuate themselves by transferring their minds
Crows /kroʊ/ form the genus Corvus in the family Corvidae. Ranging in size from the relatively small pigeon-size jackdaws (Eurasian and Daurian) to the Common Raven of the Holarctic region and Thick-billed Raven of the highlands of Ethiopia, the 40 or so members of this genus occur on all temperate continents (except South America) and several offshore and oceanic islands. In Europe the word "crow" is used to refer to the Carrion Crow or the Hooded Crow, while in North America it is used for the American Crow or the Northwestern Crow.
The crow genus makes up a third of the species in the Corvidae family. Crows appear to have evolved in Asia from the corvid stock, which had evolved in Australia. The collective name for a group of crows is a flock or, more poetically, a murder.
Recent research has found some crow species capable not only of tool use but of tool construction as well. Crows are now considered to be among the world's most intelligent animals. The Jackdaw and the European Magpie have been found to have a nidopallium approximately the same relative size as the functionally equivalent neocortex in chimpanzees and humans, and significantly larger than is found in the
Found in fictional universe:The Sacred Band of Stepsons universe
A demigod (or demi-god), meaning half-god, is a originally Greek mythological figure whose one parent was a god and whose other parent was human; as such, demigods are human-god hybrids. In some mythologies it also describes humans who became gods, or simply extremely powerful figures whose powers approach those of the gods even though they are not gods themselves.
Examples of well-known demigods include Greek hero Heracles (Roman Hercules), the Celtic hero Cuchulain, the Sumerian king Gilgamesh (who supposedly was actually two thirds god), and the ancient Germanic woodsman Ansel,.
Part of the dual nature of Greek heroes that gave rise to the modern demigod conception of them is that one parent is a mortal, and another is a god. This scenario is also occasionally embellished with the theme of double paternity: the hero's mother lying with king and god in the same night (the mother of Theseus, for example) or to be visited secretly by the god (like Danaë, mother of Perseus), and the seed of the two fathers is mixed in her womb. Thus the heroes have liminal qualities that enable them to have great strength, to cross the threshold between the worlds of the living and the dead yet
Echidnas ( /ɨˈkɪdnə/), sometimes known as spiny ant eaters, belong to the family Tachyglossidae in the monotreme order of egg-laying mammals. There are four extant species, which, together with the platypus, are the only surviving members of that order and are the only extant mammals that lay eggs. Although their diet consists largely of ants and termites, they are no more closely related to the true anteaters of the Americas than to any other placental mammal. They live in Australia and New Guinea. The echidnas are named after a monster in ancient Greek mythology.
Echidnas are small, solitary mammals covered with coarse hair and spines. Superficially, they resemble the anteaters of South America and other spiny mammals such as hedgehogs and porcupines. They have snouts which have the functions of both mouth and nose. Their snouts are elongated and slender. Like the platypus, they are equipped with electrosensors, but while the platypus has 40,000 electroreceptors on its bill, the long-billed echidna has only 2,000, and the short-billed echidna, which lives in a drier environment, has no more than 400 located at the tip of its snout. They have very short, strong limbs with large
The Eternals are a fictional race of superhumans in the Marvel Comics universe. They are described as an offshoot of the evolutionary process that created sentient life on Earth. The original instigators of this process, the alien Celestials, intended the Eternals to be the defenders of Earth which leads to the inevitability of war against their destructive counterparts, the Deviants. The Eternals were created by Jack Kirby and made their first appearance in The Eternals #1 (July 1976).
In 1970, Jack Kirby left Marvel Comics to work at DC Comics, where he began the saga of the New Gods, an epic story involving mythological and science fiction concepts, and planned to have a definite ending. However, the saga was left incomplete after the cancellation of the titles involved. Kirby began The Eternals when he returned to Marvel. The Eternals' saga was thematically similar to the New Gods', but the series was also eventually canceled without resolving many of its plots, particularly the Celestials' judgment over humanity (see Fictional Biography below). Initially, the comic book was not intended to be part of the normal Marvel continuity but a stand-alone publication. The Eternals
A falcon ( /ˈfɔːlkən/ or /ˈfælkən/) is any species of raptor in the genus Falco. The genus contains 37 species, widely distributed throughout Europe, Asia, and North America.
Adult falcons have thin tapered wings, which enable them to fly at high speed and to change direction rapidly. Fledgling falcons, in their first year of flying, have longer flight feathers which makes their configuration more like that of a general-purpose bird such as a broadwing. This makes it easier to fly while learning the exceptional skills required to be effective hunters as adults.
Peregrine Falcons have been recorded diving at speeds of 200 miles per hour (320 km/h), making them the fastest-moving creatures on Earth. Other falcons include the Gyrfalcon, Lanner Falcon, and the Merlin. Some small falcons with long narrow wings are called hobbies, and some which hover while hunting are called kestrels. The falcons are part of the family Falconidae, which also includes the caracaras, Laughing Falcon, forest falcons, and falconets.
The traditional term for a male falcon is tercel (British spelling) or tiercel (American spelling), from Latin tertius = third because of the belief that only one in three eggs
Fleas are the insects forming the order Siphonaptera. They are wingless, with mouthparts adapted for piercing skin and sucking blood. Fleas are external parasites, living by hematophagy off the blood of mammals and birds.
Some flea species include:
Over 2,000 species have been described worldwide.
Fleas are wingless insects (1/16 to 1/8-inch (1.5 to 3.3 mm) long) that are agile, usually dark colored (for example, the reddish-brown of the cat flea), with tube-like mouth-parts adapted to feeding on the blood of their hosts. Their legs are long, the hind pair well adapted for jumping: a flea can jump vertically up to 7 inches (18 cm) and horizontally up to 13 inches (33 cm), making the flea one of the best jumpers of all known animals (relative to body size), second only to the froghopper. According to an article in Science News, "researchers with the University of Cambridge in England have shown that fleas take off from their tibiae and tarsi—the insect equivalent of feet—and not their trochantera, or knees. The researchers report their conclusion in the March 1 Journal of Experimental Biology." It has been known that fleas do not use muscle power but energy stored in a protein named
Holography (from the Greek ὅλος hólos, "whole" + γραφή grafē, "writing, drawing") is a technique which enables three-dimensional images to be made. It involves the use of a laser, interference, diffraction, light intensity recording and suitable illumination of the recording. The image changes as the position and orientation of the viewing system changes in exactly the same way as if the object were still present, thus making the image appear three-dimensional.
The holographic recording itself is not an image; it consists of an apparently random structure of either varying intensity, density or profile.
The Hungarian-British physicist Dennis Gabor (Hungarian name: Gábor Dénes), was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1971 "for his invention and development of the holographic method". His work, done in the late 1940s, built on pioneering work in the field of X-ray microscopy by other scientists including Mieczysław Wolfke in 1920 and WL Bragg in 1939. The discovery was an unexpected result of research into improving electron microscopes at the British Thomson-Houston Company in Rugby, England, and the company filed a patent in December 1947 (patent GB685286). The technique as
Penguins (order Sphenisciformes, family Spheniscidae) are a group of aquatic, flightless birds living almost exclusively in the southern hemisphere, especially in Antarctica. Highly adapted for life in the water, penguins have countershaded dark and white plumage, and their wings have evolved into flippers. Most penguins feed on krill, fish, squid, and other forms of sealife caught while swimming underwater. They spend about half of their lives on land and half in the oceans.
Although all penguin species are native to the southern hemisphere, they are not found only in cold climates, such as Antarctica. In fact, only a few species of penguin live so far south. Several species are found in the temperate zone, and one species, the Galápagos Penguin, lives near the equator.
The largest living species is the Emperor Penguin (Aptenodytes forsteri): on average adults are about 1.1 m (3 ft 7 in) tall and weigh 35 kg (75 lb) or more. The smallest penguin species is the Little Blue Penguin (Eudyptula minor), also known as the Fairy Penguin, which stands around 40 cm tall (16 in) and weighs 1 kg (2.2 lb). Among extant penguins, larger penguins inhabit colder regions, while smaller penguins
Red-billed Hornbill (Tockus erythrorhynchus) is a relatively small species of hornbill found in savanna and woodland of sub-Saharan Africa. It is sometimes split into five species, the Northern Red-billed Hornbill (T. erythrorhynchus), Western Red-billed Hornbill (T. kempi), Tanzania Red-billed Hornbill (T. ruahae), Southern Red-billed Hornbill (T. rufirostris) and Damara Red-billed Hornbill (T. damarensis), but at present most authorities considered them all to be subspecies of a single species.
This conspicuous bird has mainly whitish underparts and head, and grey upperparts. It has a long tail and a long and curved red bill which lacks a casque. Sexes are similar, but the female has a smaller bill. It is a large bird, at 42 cm long, but is one of the smaller hornbills. It advertises its presence with its noisy accelerating tok-tok-tok-toktoktok call.
During incubation, the female lays three to six white eggs in a tree hole, which is blocked off with a plaster of mud, droppings and fruit pulp. There is only one narrow aperture, just big enough for the male to transfer food to the mother and the chicks. When the chicks and the female are too big to fit in the nest, the mother
The European roe deer (Capreolus capreolus), also known as the western roe deer, chevreuil or just roe deer, is a Eurasian species of deer. It is relatively small, reddish and grey-brown, and well-adapted to cold environments. Roe deer are widespread in Western Europe, from the Mediterranean to Scandinavia, and from the British Isles to the Caucasus. It is distinct from the somewhat larger Siberian roe deer.
English roe is from Old English raha, from Proto-Germanic *raikhon, cognate to Old Norse rá and German Reh. A fifth century runic inscription on a roe deer ankle bone found in England (the "Caistor-by-Norwich astragalus") transliterates as raïhan, thought to refer to the deer itself. Ultimately, the word may be drawn from the Proto-Indo-European root *rei-, meaning "streaked" or "spotted." Another translation suggests that roe is an ancient word meaning the colour red.
The roe deer is distinct from the somewhat larger Siberian roe deer (Capreolus pygargus) that is found from the Ural Mountains to as far east as China and Siberia. The two species meet at the Caucasus Mountains, with the European species occupying the southern flank of the mountain ranges and adjacent Asia Minor
In the manga and anime series Death Note, Shinigami (死神, literally "death god") are the race of extra-dimensional beings who survive by killing humans to extend their own lives. Shinigami in this series are not responsible for every death that occurs; people will eventually die regardless of whether or not the Shinigami pay attention to them, but a Shinigami can end their lives sooner than intended for their own benefit.
Takeshi Obata, the artist for Death Note, said that he had "a lot of fun" during the creation of the Shinigami. He also felt that the process was "very difficult" since he started "with nothing." He cited the difficulty in his creation of Ryuk as an example. Obata said that at first Shinigami appeared like "beasts" and that with later Shinigami such as Sidoh he designed them to look like crustaceans and insects because "it was easier." Obata said that he felt difficulty in basing characters on animal designs and keeping "the same feeling of the series." Obata said that he considered basing Shinigami on wizards but decided against the idea; he says that the rags on some Shinigami serves as a remnant of that concept. Obata added that Shinigami have no physical
Termites are a group of eusocial insects that, until recently, were classified at the taxonomic rank of order Isoptera (see taxonomy below), but are now accepted as the epifamily Termitoidae, of the cockroach order Blattodea. While termites are commonly known, especially in Australia, as "white ants", they are only distantly related to the ants.
Like ants, some bees, and wasps—which are all placed in the separate order Hymenoptera—termites divide labor among castes, produce overlapping generations and take care of young collectively. Termites mostly feed on dead plant material, generally in the form of wood, leaf litter, soil, or animal dung, and about 10% of the estimated 4,000 species (about 2,600 taxonomically known) are economically significant as pests that can cause serious structural damage to buildings, crops or plantation forests. Termites are major detritivores, particularly in the subtropical and tropical regions, and their recycling of wood and other plant matter is of considerable ecological importance.
As eusocial insects, termites live in colonies that, at maturity, number from several hundred to several million individuals. Colonies use decentralised, self-organised
An android is a robot or synthetic organism designed to look and act like a human, especially one with a body having a flesh-like resemblance. Although "android" is used almost universally to refer to both sexes, and those of no particular sex, "android" technically refers to the male form, while "gynoid" is the feminine form. Until recently, androids have largely remained within the domain of science fiction, frequently seen in film and television. However, advancements in robotic technology have allowed the design of functional and realistic humanoid robots.
The word was coined from the Greek root ἀνδρ- 'man' and the suffix -oid 'having the form or likeness of'.
The term "droid", coined by George Lucas for the original Star Wars film and now used widely within science fiction, originated as an abridgment of "android", but has been used by Lucas and others to mean any robot, including distinctly non-human form machines like R2-D2. The abbreviation "andy", coined as a pejorative by writer Philip K. Dick in his novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, has seen some further usage, such as within the TV series Total Recall 2070.
The Oxford English Dictionary traces the earliest use
Anteater is a common name for the four mammal species of the suborder Vermilingua (meaning "worm tongue") commonly known for eating ants and termites. Another common name is ant bears, and the individual species have other names in English and other languages. Together with the sloths, they compose the order Pilosa. The name "anteater" is also colloquially applied to the unrelated aardvark, numbat, echidnas, pangolins and some members of the Oecobiidae.
Extant species include the giant anteater Myrmecophaga tridactyla, about 1.8 m (5 ft 11 in) long including the tail; the silky anteater Cyclopes didactylus, about 35 cm (14 in) long; the southern tamandua or collared anteater Tamandua tetradactyla, about 1.2 m (3 ft 11 in) long; and the northern tamandua Tamandua mexicana of similar dimensions.
The anteaters are more closely related to the sloths than they are to any other group of mammals. Their next closest relations are armadillos. Three genera are still living: the giant and the silky anteaters, and the northern and southern tamanduas, and several genera are extinct.
All anteaters have elongated snouts equipped with a thin tongue that can be extended to a length
The Chihuahua (help·info) /t͡ʃɪˈwɑwɑ/ (Spanish: chihuahueño) is the smallest breed of dog and is named for the state of Chihuahua in Mexico. Chihuahuas come in a wide variety of sizes, head shapes, colors, and coat lengths.
The Chihuahua’s history is puzzling and there are many theories surrounding the origin of the breed. Both folklore and archeological finds show that the breed originated in Mexico. The most common and most likely theory is that Chihuahuas are descended from the Techichi, a companion dog favored by the Toltec civilization in Mexico. No records of the Techichi are available prior to the 9th century, although dog pots from Colima, Mexico, buried as part of the western Mexico shaft tomb tradition which date back to 300 B.C. are thought to depict Techichis. It is probable that earlier ancestors were present prior to the Mayans as dogs approximating the Chihuahua are found in materials from the Great Pyramid of Cholula, predating 1530 and in the ruins of Chichen Itza on the Yucatán Peninsula. In fact, wheeled dog toys representing both the "deer head" and "apple head" varieties of Chihuahua have been unearthed across Mesoamerica from Mexico to El Salvador. The
In the fiction of J. R. R. Tolkien, the Dwarves are a race inhabiting the world of Arda, a fictional prehistoric Earth which includes the continent Middle-earth.
They appear in his books The Hobbit (1937), The Lord of the Rings (1954–55), and the posthumously published The Silmarillion (1977), Unfinished Tales (1980), and The History of Middle-earth series (1983–96), the last three edited by his son and literary executor Christopher Tolkien.
In The Book of Lost Tales the very few Dwarves who appear are portrayed as evil beings, employers of Orc mercenaries and in conflict with the Elves—who are the imagined 'authors' of the myths, and are therefore biased against Dwarves. Tolkien was inspired by the dwarves of Norse myths and dwarfs of traditional European fairy-tales (such as those of the Brothers Grimm), from whom his Dwarves take their characteristic affinity with mining, metalworking, crafting and avarice.
The representation of Dwarves as evil changed dramatically with The Hobbit. Here the Dwarves became occasionally comedic and bumbling, but largely seen as honourable, serious-minded, but still portraying some negative characteristics such as being gold-hungry, overly proud
The Emperor Penguin (Aptenodytes forsteri) is the tallest and heaviest of all living penguin species and is endemic to Antarctica. The male and female are similar in plumage and size, reaching 122 cm (48 in) in height and weighing anywhere from 22 to 45 kg (49 to 99 lb). The dorsal side and head are black and sharply delineated from the white belly, pale-yellow breast and bright-yellow ear patches. Like all penguins it is flightless, with a streamlined body, and wings stiffened and flattened into flippers for a marine habitat.
Its diet consists primarily of fish, but can also include crustaceans, such as krill, and cephalopods, such as squid. In hunting, the species can remain submerged up to 18 minutes, diving to a depth of 535 m (1,755 ft). It has several adaptations to facilitate this, including an unusually structured hemoglobin to allow it to function at low oxygen levels, solid bones to reduce barotrauma, and the ability to reduce its metabolism and shut down non-essential organ functions.
The Emperor Penguin is perhaps best known for the sequence of journeys adults make each year in order to mate and to feed their offspring. The only penguin species that breeds during the
The goldfish (Carassius auratus auratus) is a freshwater fish in the family Cyprinidae of order Cypriniformes. It was one of the earliest fish to be domesticated, and is one of the most commonly kept aquarium fish.
A relatively small member of the carp family (which also includes the koi carp and the crucian carp), the goldfish is a domesticated version of a less-colorful carp (Carassius auratus) native to east Asia. It was first domesticated in China more than a thousand years ago, and several distinct breeds have since been developed. Goldfish breeds vary greatly in size, body shape, fin configuration and coloration (various combinations of white, yellow, orange, red, brown, and black are known).
Starting in ancient China, various species of carp (collectively known as Asian carps) have been domesticated and reared as food fish for thousands of years. Some of these normally gray or silver species have a tendency to produce red, orange or yellow color mutations; this was first recorded in the Jin Dynasty (265–420).
During the Tang Dynasty (618–907), it was popular to raise carp in ornamental ponds and watergardens. A natural genetic mutation produced gold (actually yellowish
In the fictional universe of the science fiction TV series Stargate SG-1, the Jaffa (pronounced j'FAH) are modified humans genetically engineered by the Goa'uld in antiquity to serve as soldiers and as incubators for their young.
The main difference between a Jaffa and a normal human is an abdominal pouch accessible from the outside by a X-shaped slit. The pouch serves as an incubator for a larval Goa'uld, known as a prim'tah, which improves their ability to successfully take a host upon maturation from 50% to nearly 100%. The Goa'uld have a device capable of quickly transforming humans into Jaffa. The larval symbiote grants the Jaffa enhanced strength, health, healing, and longevity (in excess of 150 years). However, the presence of the symbiote also replaces the Jaffa's immune system, and if removed the Jaffa will die a long and painful death that can only be avoided by lifelong regular injections of the drug tretonin which replaces the prim'tah's functions in the jaffa body. The Jaffa equivalent of puberty is the Age of Prata, at which time a prim'tah must be implanted. Jaffa do not require sleep, but must engage in a form of meditation called kelnorim in order to synchronize
A leprechaun (Irish: leipreachán) is a type of fairy in Irish folklore, usually taking the form of an old man, clad in a red or green coat, who enjoys partaking in mischief. Like other fairy creatures, leprechauns have been linked to the Tuatha Dé Danann of Irish mythology. The Leprechauns spend all their time busily making shoes, and store away all their coins in a hidden pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. If ever captured by a human, the Leprechaun has the magical power to grant three wishes in exchange for their release. Popular depiction shows the Leprechaun as being no taller than a small child, with a beard and hat, although they may originally have been perceived as the tallest of the mound-dwellers (the Tuatha Dé Danann).
The name leprechaun is derived from the Irish word leipreachán, defined by Patrick Dinneen as "a pigmy, a sprite, or leprechaun". The further derivation is less certain; according to most sources, the word is thought to be a corruption of Middle Irish luchrupán, from the Old Irish luchorpán, a compound of the roots lú (small) and corp (body). The root corp, which was borrowed from the Latin corpus, attests to the early influence of Ecclesiastical Latin
Sharks are a group of fish characterized by a cartilaginous skeleton, five to seven gill slits on the sides of the head, and pectoral fins that are not fused to the head. Modern sharks are classified within the clade Selachimorpha (or Selachii), and are the sister group to the rays. However, the term "shark" has also been used for extinct members of the subclass Elasmobranchii outside the Selachimorpha, such as Cladoselache and Xenacanthus. Under this broader definition, the earliest known sharks date from more than 420 million years ago.
Since that time, sharks have diversified into over 400 species. They range in size from the small dwarf lanternshark (Etmopterus perryi), a deep sea species of only 17 centimetres (6.7 in) in length, to the whale shark (Rhincodon typus), the largest fish in the world, which reaches approximately 12 metres (39 ft). Despite its size, the whale shark feeds only on plankton, squid, and small fish by filter feeding. Sharks are found in all seas and are common down to depths of 2,000 metres (6,600 ft). They generally do not live in freshwater although there are a few known exceptions, such as the bull shark and the river shark that can survive in both
True crabs are decapod crustaceans of the infraorder Brachyura, which typically have a very short projecting "tail" (Greek: βραχύς / brachys = short, οὐρά / οura = tail), or where the reduced abdomen is entirely hidden under the thorax. Many other animals with similar names – such as hermit crabs, king crabs, porcelain crabs, horseshoe crabs and crab lice – are not true crabs.
Crabs are generally covered with a thick exoskeleton, composed primarily of calcium carbonate, and armed with a single pair of chelae (claws). Crabs are found in all of the world's oceans, while many crabs live in fresh water and on land, particularly in tropical regions. Crabs vary in size from the pea crab, a few millimetres wide, to the Japanese spider crab, with a leg span of up to 4 metres (13 ft).
About 850 species of crab are freshwater, terrestrial or semi-terrestrial species; they are found throughout the world's tropical and semi-tropical regions. They were previously thought to be a monophyletic group, but are now believed to represent at least two distinct lineages, one in the Old World and one in the New World.
The earliest unambiguous crab fossils date from the Jurassic, although Carboniferous
Dinosaurs are a diverse group of animals of the clade Dinosauria. They first appeared during the Triassic period, approximately 230 million years ago, and were the dominant terrestrial vertebrates for 135 million years, from the beginning of the Jurassic (about 200 million years ago) until the end of the Cretaceous (65.5 million years ago), when the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event led to the extinction of most dinosaur groups at the close of the Mesozoic Era. The fossil record indicates that birds evolved from theropod dinosaurs during the Jurassic Period, and consequently they are considered a subgroup of dinosaurs in modern classification systems. Some birds survived the extinction event that occurred 65 million years ago, and their descendants continue the dinosaur lineage to the present day.
Dinosaurs are a varied group of animals from taxonomic, morphological and ecological standpoints. Birds, at over 9,000 living species, are the most diverse group of vertebrates besides perciform fish. Using fossil evidence, paleontologists have identified over 500 distinct genera and more than 1,000 different species of non-avian dinosaurs. Dinosaurs are represented on every continent
God usually refers to the single deity in monotheism or the monist deity in pantheism. God is often conceived of as the supernatural creator and overseer of humans and the universe. Theologians have ascribed a variety of attributes to the many different conceptions of God. The most common among these include omniscience (infinite knowledge), omnipotence (unlimited power), omnipresence (present everywhere), omnibenevolence (perfect goodness), divine simplicity, and eternal and necessary existence.
God has also been conceived as being incorporeal (immaterial), a personal being, the source of all moral obligation, and the "greatest conceivable existent". These attributes were supported to varying degrees by the early Jewish, Christian and Muslim theologian philosophers. Many notable medieval philosophers and modern philosophers have developed arguments for and against the existence of God.
There are many names for God, and different names are attached to different cultural ideas about who God is and what attributes he possesses. In the Hebrew Bible "I Am that I Am," and the "Tetragrammaton" YHVH are used as names of God, while Yahweh, and Jehovah are sometimes used in Christianity as
Hamsters are rodents belonging to the subfamily Cricetinae. The subfamily contains about 25 species, classified in six or seven genera.
Hamsters are crepuscular animals which burrow underground in the daylight to avoid being caught by predators. Their diets include a variety of foods, including dried food, berries, nuts, fresh fruits and vegetables. In the wild, they feed primarily on seeds, fruits and greens, and will occasionally eat burrowing insects. They have an elongated pouch on each side of their heads that extends to their shoulders, which they stuff full of food to be stored, brought back to the colony or to be eaten later.
Hamster behavior varies depending on their environment, genetics, and interaction with people. Because they are easy to breed in captivity, hamsters are often used as laboratory animals in more economically developed countries. Hamsters have also become established as popular small house pets, and are sometimes accepted even in areas where other rodents are disliked, and their typically solitary nature can reduce the risk of excessive litters developing in households.
Although the Syrian hamster or golden hamster (Mesocricetus auratus) was first
Hawks are birds of prey, widely distributed and varying greatly in size. They have sharp beaks and strong claws for catching and eating prey.
Owls are members of the order Strigiformes and are not hawks.
The common names of certain non-hawks include the term "hawk", reflecting traditional usage rather than taxonomy, such as referring to an Osprey as a "fish hawk" or the Buteo species B. jamaicensis as a Red-tailed Hawk.
In February 2005, the Canadian ornithologist Louis Lefebvre announced a method of measuring avian "IQ" in terms of their innovation in feeding habits. Hawks were named among the most intelligent birds based on his scale.
Hawks are widely reputed to have visual acuity several times that of a normal human being. This is due to the many photoreceptors in the retina (up to 1,000,000 per square mm for Buteo, against 200,000 for humans), an exceptional number of nerves connecting these receptors to the brain, and an indented fovea, which magnifies the central portion of the visual field.
Rats are various medium-sized, long-tailed rodents of the superfamily Muroidea. "True rats" are members of the genus Rattus, the most important of which to humans are the black rat, Rattus rattus, and the brown rat, Rattus norvegicus. Many members of other rodent genera and families are also referred to as rats, and share many characteristics with true rats.
Rats are typically distinguished from mice by their size; rats are generally large muroid rodents, while mice are generally small muroid rodents. The muroid family is very large and complex, and the common terms rat and mouse are not taxonomically specific. Generally, when someone discovers a large muroid, its common name includes the term rat, while if it is small, the name includes the term mouse. Scientifically, the terms are not confined to members of the Rattus and Mus genera, for example, the pack rat and cotton mouse.
The best-known rat species are the black rat (Rattus rattus) and the brown rat (Rattus norvegicus). The group is generally known as the Old World rats or true rats, and originated in Asia. Rats are bigger than most Old World mice, which are their relatives, but seldom weigh over 500 grams (1.1 lb) in the
In the universe of Games Workshop's table-top wargame Warhammer 40,000, the Tau Empire is an alien race of people, inhabiting a small but dense region of space on the eastern edge of the Galaxy, roughly 300 light years in diameter. The Tau were first introduced to Warhammer 40,000 in late 2001, the result of Games Workshop's plan to introduce a new race to the game.
The Tau are a young race on the galactic scene, have advanced quickly since their first encounter with the Imperium of Man in the 35th millennium, rising from a savanna dwelling hunter-gatherer level of technology to a starfaring race in less than six thousand years. Tau society has also advanced rapidly from warring tribes to a unified caste system, guided by a Utilitarian philosophy that they call the "Greater Good" ("Tau'va" in the Tau language). The goal of the Tau is to bring the greatest overall good - prosperity and state of well-being - to as many as possible, by means of attempting to peacefully annex alien species into the Empire before resorting to violent conquest. The Tau are unique in the Warhammer 40,000 setting in this sense. Put another way this means that the needs of the many take precedence over the
The meerkat or suricate, Suricata suricatta, is a small mammal belonging to the mongoose family. Meerkats live in all parts of the Kalahari Desert in Botswana, in much of the Namib Desert in Namibia and southwestern Angola, and in South Africa. A group of meerkats is called a "mob", "gang" or "clan". A meerkat clan often contains about 20 meerkats, but some super-families have 50 or more members. In captivity, meerkats have an average life span of 12–14 years, and about half this in the wild.
"Meerkat" is a loanword from Afrikaans. The name has a Dutch origin but by misidentification. Dutch meerkat refers to the "guenon", a monkey of the Cercopithecus genus. The word "meerkat" is Dutch for "lake cat", but the suricata is not in the cat family, and neither suricatas nor guenons are attracted to lakes; the word possibly started as a Dutch adaptation of a derivative of Sanskrit markaţa मर्कट = "monkey", perhaps in Africa via an Indian sailor on board a Dutch East India Company ship. The traders of the Dutch East India Company were likely familiar with monkeys, but the Dutch settlers attached the name to the wrong animal at the Cape. The suricata is called stokstaartje = "little
Found in fictional universe:Heroes in Hell fictional universe
An angel is a supernatural being or spirit found in various religions and mythologies. In Abrahamic religions they are often depicted as servants of God and celestial beings who act as intermediaries between heaven and Earth. In Zoroastrianism and Native American religions angels are depicted as a guiding influence or a guardian spirit.
The English word "angel" is derived from the Greek ἄγγελος (angelos), a translation of מלאך (mal'akh) in the Tanakh; a similar term, ملائكة (Malāīkah), is used in the Qur'an. The Hebrew and Greek words in ancient times meant messenger, and depending on the context may refer either to a human messenger or a supernatural messenger. The human messenger could possibly be a prophet or priest, such as Malachi, "my messenger", and the Greek superscription that the Book of Malachi was written "by the hand of his messenger" ἀγγήλου. Examples of a supernatural messenger, are the "Mal'akh YHWH," who is either a messenger from God, an aspect of God (such as the Logos), or God Himself as the messenger (the "theophanic angel.")
The term "angel" has also been expanded to various notions of spirits found in many other religious traditions. Other roles of angels
The cougar (Puma concolor), also known as the puma, mountain lion, or catamount, is a mammal of the family Felidae, native to the Americas. This large, solitary cat has the greatest range of any large wild terrestrial mammal in the Western Hemisphere, extending from Yukon in Canada to the southern Andes of South America. An adaptable, generalist species, the cougar is found in every major American habitat type. It is the second heaviest cat in the Western Hemisphere, after the jaguar. Although large, the cougar is most closely related to smaller felines and is closer genetically to the domestic cat than to true lions. Like the smaller felines, the cougar is nocturnal.
A capable stalk-and-ambush predator, the cougar pursues a wide variety of prey. Primary food sources include ungulates such as deer, elk, moose, and bighorn sheep, as well as domestic cattle, horses and sheep, particularly in the northern part of its range. It will also hunt species as small as insects and rodents. This cat prefers habitats with dense underbrush and rocky areas for stalking, but it can also live in open areas. The cougar is territorial and survives at low population densities. Individual territory
Mandalorians are a fictional group of warriors from several species in the Star Wars universe. They commonly act as mercenaries or bounty hunters. According to Star Wars Expanded Universe material, they are the cultural descendants of an extinct species called the Taung. The leader of the Mandalorians typically takes on the title of "Mand'alor," the name of their first leader, whose planet was named after him in honor. They have been portrayed in various media, including the novel, Triple Zero by Karen Traviss and Hasbro's Star Wars Elite Forces action figure sets Mandalorians & Omega Squad and Republic Mandalorians & Clone Troopers. Karen Traviss, author of Hard Contact, expanded Mandalorian culture in the novel, as explained in Star Wars on Trial. Mandalorians are most commonly portrayed as audacious and dangerous.
Originally, the Mandalorian clans were led by the mysterious "Mand'alor the First" and were ranked among the best fighters in the galaxy, thriving on battle. They are known for their cutting-edge weaponry and strict code of honor. These Mandalorians wear crusader armor that differs from one soldier to the next.
Mandalore itself is a temperate, albeit desolate, world
Metroids are a fictional species of parasitic alien creatures from the Metroid video game series created by Nintendo.
Metroids were bio-engineered by the birdlike extra-terrestrials, the Chozo, on the fictional planet SR-388. According to the Metroid Fusion instruction manual, "Metroid" means "ultimate warrior" in the Chozo language.
The Metroid was created as a biological defence against the X Parasite, a virulent form of life that entered the body of other life forms, copying the DNA and splicing it with other infected victims, creating violent and dangerous hybrids. Metroids feed on "life energy", rather than physical matter (like blood), enabling them to absorb the X Parasite without becoming infected.
The X Parasite outbreak was in fact contained (though not eliminated), but the Metroids were themselves a dangerous biological parasite. The Chozo on SR-388 were either destroyed or forced to evacuate the planet when the Metroids began to multiply and attack other forms of life.
The body of a Metroid - in its most common, larval state - consists of a thick, gelatinous, transparent membrane, resembling a jellyfish (only with large fangs instead of tentacles). Enclosed in
Orcs are one of the races in Games Workshop's Warhammer Fantasy universe, and are related to goblins. The brutish orcs, though less intelligent, tend to dominate the meeker goblins. In Warhammer Fantasy Battle, rules for using orcs are covered in the book Warhammer Armies: Orcs & Goblins.
Orcs in Warhammer are not very intelligent or knowledgeable but are capable of cunning. In combat they can transform even the most common object into a lethal killing instrument. They are extremely warlike, with a society geared towards constant warfare, living in small tribal groups with a strong chain of command. They are known for large, brutal armies of difficult-to-kill troops, usually supported by a variety of units and war machines. The constant need to fight keeps the orcs from forming anything but temporary alliances with one other. This is described in-game as "animosity".
Orcs are taller and broader than humans, with short legs and long arms much like a non-human ape. They have massive heads which come directly forward on their necks, giving them a stooping appearance. Their jaws are lined with vicious fangs that jut out from their underbite. They have beady red eyes, a generally foul
Pegasus (Ancient Greek: Πήγασος, Pégasos, Latin Pegasus) is one of the best known mythological creatures in Greek mythology. He is a winged divine horse, usually depicted as white in colour. He was sired by Poseidon, in his role as horse-god, and foaled by the Gorgon Medusa. He was the brother of Chrysaor, born at a single birthing when his mother was decapitated by Perseus. Greco-Roman poets write about his ascent to heaven after his birth and his obeisance to Zeus, king of the gods, who instructed him to bring lightning and thunder from Olympus. Friend of the Muses, Pegasus is the creator of Hippocrene, the fountain on Mt. Helicon. He was captured by the Greek hero Bellerophon near the fountain Peirene with the help of Athena and Poseidon. Pegasus allows the hero to ride him to defeat a monster, the Chimera, before realizing many other exploits. His rider, however, falls off his back trying to reach Mount Olympus. Zeus transformed him into the constellation Pegasus and placed him up in the sky.
Hypotheses have been proposed regarding its relationship with the Muses, the gods Athena, Poseidon, Zeus, Apollo, and the hero Perseus.
The symbolism of Pegasus varies with time. Symbol of
The Southern Rockhopper Penguin group (Eudyptes chrysocome), are two subspecies of rockhopper penguin, that together are sometimes considered distinct from the Northern Rockhopper Penguin. It occurs in subantarctic waters of the western Pacific and Indian Oceans, as well as around the southern coasts of South America.
This is the smallest yellow-crested, black-and-white penguin in the genus Eudyptes. It reaches a length of 45–58 cm (18–23 in) and typically weighs 2–3.4 kg (4.4–7.5 lb), although there are records of exceptionally large rockhoppers weighing 5 kg (11 lb). It has slate-grey upper parts and a straight, bright yellow eyebrow ending in long yellowish plumes projecting sideways behind a red eye.
The Rockhopper Penguin complex is confusing. Many taxononists consider all three Rockhopper Penguin forms subspecies. Some split the Northern subspecies (moseleyi) from the Southern forms (chrysocome and filholi). Still others consider all three distinct. The subspecies recognized for the Southern Rockhopper Penguin complex are:
The Northern Rockhopper Penguin lives in a different water mass than the Western and Eastern Rockhopper Penguins, separated by the Subtropical Front, and
Storks are large, long-legged, long-necked wading birds with long, stout bills. They belong to the family Ciconiidae. They are the only family in the biological order Ciconiiformes, which was once much larger and held a number of families.
Storks occur in many regions of the world and tend to live in drier habitats than the related herons, spoonbills and ibises; they also lack the powder down that those groups use to clean off fish slime. Storks have no syrinx and are mute, giving no call; bill-clattering is an important mode of stork communication at the nest. Many species are migratory. Most storks eat frogs, fish, insects, earthworms, small birds and small mammals. There are 19 living species of storks in six genera.
Various terms are used to refer to groups of storks, two frequently used ones being a muster of storks and a phalanx of storks.
Storks tend to use soaring, gliding flight, which conserves energy. Soaring requires thermal air currents. Ottomar Anschütz's famous 1884 album of photographs of storks inspired the design of Otto Lilienthal's experimental gliders of the late 19th century. Storks are heavy, with wide wingspans: the Marabou Stork, with a wingspan of 3.2 m
The swallows and martins are a group of passerine birds in the family Hirundinidae which are characterised by their adaptation to aerial feeding. Swallow is used colloquially in Europe as a synonym for the Barn Swallow.
This family comprises two subfamilies: Pseudochelidoninae (the river martins of the genus Pseudochelidon) and Hirundininae (all other swallows and martins). Within the Old World, the name "martin" tends to be used for the squarer-tailed species, and the name "swallow" for the more fork-tailed species; however, there is no scientific distinction between these two groups. Within the New World, "martin" is reserved for members of the genus Progne. (These two systems are responsible for the Sand Martin being called "Bank Swallow" in the New World.) The entire family contains around 83 species in 19 genera.
The swallows have a cosmopolitan distribution across the world and breed on all the continents except Antarctica. It is believed that this family originated in Africa as hole-nesters; Africa still has the greatest diversity of species. They also occur on a number of oceanic islands. A number of European and North American species are long-distance migrants; by
The term undead describes beings in mythology, legend or fiction that are deceased yet behave as if alive. A common example is a corpse re-animated by supernatural forces by the application of the deceased's own life force or that of another being (such as a demon). Undead may be incorporeal like ghosts, or corporeal like vampires and zombies. The undead are featured in the belief systems of most cultures, and appear in many works of fantasy and horror fiction.
Bram Stoker considered using the title The Un-Dead for his novel Dracula (1897), and use of the term in the novel is mostly responsible for the modern sense of the word. The word does appear in English before Stoker but with the more literal sense of "alive" or "not dead", for which citations can be found in the Oxford English Dictionary. Stoker's use of the term refers only to vampires, and the extension to other types of supernatural beings arose later. Most commonly, it is now taken to refer to supernatural beings which had at one time been alive and continue to display some aspects of life after death, but the usage is highly variable.
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley is a seminal text in 19th century discourse about the
A dwarf, in the Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) fantasy roleplaying game, is a humanoid race, one of the primary races available for player characters. The idea for the D&D dwarf comes from European mythologies and J. R. R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings novels, and has been used in D&D and its predecessor Chainmail since the early 1970s. Variations from the standard dwarf archetype of a short and stout demihuman are commonly called subraces, of which there are more than a dozen across many different rule sets and campaign settings.
The concept of the dwarf comes from Norse and Teutonic mythology. In particular, the dwarves in the Germanic story The Ring of the Nibelungen and the Brothers Grimm fairy tale "Rumpelstiltskin" have been called "ancestors" of Dungeons & Dragons dwarves. Along with giants, dwarves were one of the first types of non-humans to be introduced into the Chainmail game, the forebear of D&D, when miniature figures of varying sizes were used together in the same wargame. The dwarf first appears as a player character class in the original 1974 edition of Dungeons & Dragons, with a design that is strongly influenced by their portrayal in Poul Anderson's Three Hearts and
Ents are a race of beings in J. R. R. Tolkien's fantasy world Middle-earth who closely resemble trees. They are similar to the talking trees in folklore around the world. Their name is derived from the Anglo-Saxon word for giant.
The Ents appear in The Lord of the Rings as ancient shepherds of the forest and allies of the Free Peoples of Middle-earth during the War of the Ring. The Ent who figures most prominently in the book is Treebeard, the oldest creature in Middle-earth. At the time The Lord of the Rings takes place, there are no young Ents (Entings) because the Entwives (female Ents) were lost. The Ents are akin to Huorns, whom Treebeard describes as trees that have become animated or, conversely, as Ents who have grown more "treeish" over time.
Inspired by Tolkien and similar traditions, animated or anthropomorphic tree creatures appear in a variety of media and works of fantasy.
The word "Ent" was taken from the Anglo-Saxon (Old English) word ent, meaning "giant". Tolkien borrowed the word from the Anglo-Saxon phrases orþanc enta geweorc = "work of cunning giants" and eald enta geweorc = "old work of giants" (describing Roman ruins). In this sense, Ents are probably the
The jinn (Arabic: جن ǧinn, singular جني ǧinnī; also spelled djinn), or genies, are supernatural spirits mentioned in the Quran and Islamic mythology who inhabit an unseen world in dimensions beyond the visible universe of humans. Together, the jinn, humans and angels make up the three sentient creations of God. The Quran mentions that the jinn are made of a smokeless and "scorching fire", and they have the physical property of weight. Like human beings, the jinn can also be good, evil, or neutrally benevolent.
The jinn are mentioned frequently in the Quran, and the 72nd sura of the Quran is entitled Sūrat al-Jinn.
Jinn is a noun of the collective number in Arabic literally meaning "hidden from sight", and it derives from the Arabic root ǧ-n-n meaning "to hide" or "be hidden". Other words derived from this root are maǧnūn 'mad' (literally, 'one whose intellect is hidden'), ǧunūn 'madness', and ǧanīn 'embryo, fetus' ('hidden inside the womb').
The Arabic root ǧ-n-n means 'to hide, conceal'. A word for garden or Paradise, جنّة ǧannah, is a cognate of the Hebrew word גן gan 'garden', derived from the same Semitic root. In arid climates, gardens have to be protected against
The horse (Equus ferus caballus) is one of two extant subspecies of Equus ferus, or the wild horse. It is an odd-toed ungulate mammal belonging to the taxonomic family Equidae. The horse has evolved over the past 45 to 55 million years from a small multi-toed creature into the large, single-toed animal of today. Humans began to domesticate horses around 4000 BC, and their domestication is believed to have been widespread by 3000 BC. Horses in the subspecies caballus are domesticated, although some domesticated populations live in the wild as feral horses. These feral populations are not true wild horses, as this term is used to describe horses that have never been domesticated, such as the endangered Przewalski's horse, a separate subspecies, and the only remaining true wild horse. There is an extensive, specialized vocabulary used to describe equine-related concepts, covering everything from anatomy to life stages, size, colors, markings, breeds, locomotion, and behavior.
Horses' anatomy enables them to make use of speed to escape predators and they have a well-developed sense of balance and a strong fight-or-flight instinct. Related to this need to flee from predators in the wild
Moles are small cylindrical mammals adapted to a subterranean lifestyle. They have velvety fur; tiny or invisible ears and eyes; relatively atrophied hindlimbs; and short, powerful forelimbs with large paws oriented for digging. The term is especially and most properly used for the true moles, those of the Talpidae family in the order Soricomorpha found in most parts of North America, Asia, and Europe. It also refers to other completely unrelated mammals of Australia and southern Africa which have also evolved the mole body plan; it is not commonly used for some talpids, such as desmans and shrew-moles, which do not fit the common definition of “mole”, as well.
By the era of Early Modern English, the mole was also known in English as mouldywarp, a word having cognates in other Germanic languages such as German (Maulwurf), and Danish, Norwegian, Swedish and Icelandic (muldvarp, mullvad, moldvarpa), where the muld/mull/mold part of the word means soil and the varp/vad/varpa part means throw, hence "one who throws soil" or "dirt tosser".
Male moles are called "boars", females are called "sows". A group of moles is called a "labour".
Moles have been found to tolerate higher levels of
The killer whale (Orcinus orca), also referred to as the orca whale or orca, and less commonly as the blackfish, is a toothed whale belonging to the oceanic dolphin family. Killer whales are found in all oceans, from the frigid Arctic and Antarctic regions to tropical seas. Killer whales as a species have a diverse diet, although individual populations often specialize in particular types of prey. Some feed exclusively on fish, while others hunt marine mammals such as sea lions, seals, walruses, and even large whales. Killer whales are regarded as apex predators, lacking natural predators.
Killer whales are highly social; some populations are composed of matrilineal family groups which are the most stable of any animal species. Their sophisticated hunting techniques and vocal behaviors, which are often specific to a particular group and passed across generations, have been described as manifestations of culture.
The IUCN currently assesses the orca's conservation status as data deficient because of the likelihood that two or more killer whale types are separate species. Some local populations are considered threatened or endangered due to prey depletion, habitat loss, pollution (by
The sperm whale (Physeter macrocephalus) is a large toothed whale (odontocete) belonging to the order Cetacea. It is the only living member of genus Physeter, and one of three extant species in the sperm whale family, along with the pygmy sperm whale and dwarf sperm whale. A marine mammal, it possesses the largest brain of any animal. Its name derives from a milky-white waxy substance, spermaceti, found in its enormous head.
A mature male can grow to 20.5 metres (67 ft) long, its head representing up to one-third of the animal's length. The largest living toothed animal, the species feeds primarily on giant and colossal squid. Plunging to 3 kilometres (9,800 ft) for prey, it is the deepest diving mammal. Its clicking vocalization, a form of sonar which may have other purposes, is the loudest sound produced by any animal.
The sperm whale is cosmopolitan, living across the oceans in groups called social units. Units of females and their young live separately from sexually mature males. The females cooperate to protect and nurse their young. Females give birth every three to six years, and care for the calves for more than a decade.
Living up to 70 years, a mature sperm whale has few
A gynoid is anything which resembles or pertains to the female human form. The term has more recently been applied to a humanoid robot designed to more accurately look like a human female with much more realism than normal androids, or of those with a sexual connotation. However, it has not gained popular usage to refer specifically to female robots, as the term android is used almost universally to refer to robotic humanoids regardless of apparent gender. Android is perceived as implying a male-styled robot according to some cultural readings however.
The name is also used in American English medical terminology as a shortening of the term gynecoid (gynaecoid in British English).
The term gynoid was used by Gwyneth Jones in her 1985 novel Divine Endurance to describe a robot slave character in a futuristic China, that is judged by her beauty.
The tongue-in-cheek portmanteau fembot (female robot) was used in the Austin Powers films, a cultural play on the fembots originating in the TV series The Bionic Woman. Robotess is the oldest gender-specific term, originating in 1921 from the same source as robot.
Examples of female robots include:
The reaction of people to robots that
Hares and jackrabbits are leporids belonging to the genus Lepus. A hare less than one year old is called a leveret. Four species commonly known as types of hare are classified outside of Lepus: the hispid hare (Caprolagus hispidus), and three species known as red rock hares (Pronolagus spp.).
Hares are very fast-moving animals; the European brown hare (Lepus europaeus) is able to run at speeds of up to 72 km/h (45 mph). They live solitarily or in pairs, while a "drove" is the collective noun for a group of hares.
A common type of hare in Arctic North America is the snowshoe hare, replaced farther south by the black-tailed jackrabbit, white-tailed jackrabbit, and other species.
Normally a shy animal, the European brown hare changes its behavior in spring, when hares can be seen in broad daylight chasing one another around meadows; this appears to be competition between males to attain dominance (and hence more access to breeding females). During this spring frenzy, hares can be seen "boxing"; one hare striking another with its paws (probably the origin of the term "mad as a March hare"). For a long time, this had been thought to be intermale competition, but closer observation has
The koala (Phascolarctos cinereus) is an arboreal herbivorous marsupial native to Australia, and the only extant representative of the family Phascolarctidae.
The koala is found in coastal regions of eastern and southern Australia, from Adelaide to the southern part of Cape York Peninsula. Populations also extend for considerable distances inland in regions with enough moisture to support suitable woodlands. The koalas of South Australia were largely exterminated during the early part of the 20th century, but the state has since been repopulated with Victorian stock. The koala is not found in Tasmania, the Northern Territory or Western Australia. As of 2012 there have been increasing concerns about the animal's sustainable future in the environment.
The word koala comes from the Dharuk gula. Although the vowel /u/ was originally written in the English orthography as "oo" (in spellings such as coola or koolah), it was changed to "oa" possibly due to an error. The word is erroneously said to mean "doesn't drink".
The scientific name of the koala's genus, Phascolarctos, is derived from Greek phaskolos "pouch" and arktos "bear". Its species name, cinereus, is Latin and means
Characters of This Species:Ezio Auditore da Firenze
A male (♂) organism is the physiological sex which produces sperm, and in most mammals typically has a y chromosome. Each spermatozoon can fuse with a larger female gamete or ovum, in the process of fertilization. A male cannot reproduce sexually without access to at least one ovum from a female, but some organisms can reproduce both sexually and asexually. Most mammal and human males have a Y chromosome, which produces testosterone to develop male reproductive organs.
Not all species share a common sex-determination system. In most animals including humans, sex is determined genetically, but in some species it can be determined due to social, environmental or other factors.
The existence of two sexes seems to have been selected independently across different evolutionary lineages (see Convergent Evolution). The repeated pattern is sexual reproduction in isogamous species with two or more mating types with gametes of identical form and behavior (but different at the molecular level) to anisogamous species with gametes of male and female types to oogamous species in which the female gamete is very much larger than the male and has no ability to move. There is a good argument that
A sandbag (floodbag) is a sack made of hessian/burlap, polypropylene or other materials that is filled with sand or soil and used for such purposes as flood control, military fortification, shielding glass windows in war zones and ballast.
Advantages are that burlap and sand are inexpensive, and that the bags can be brought in empty and filled with local sand or soil.
Sandbags may be used during emergencies when rivers threaten to overflood, or a levee or dike is damaged. They may also be used in non-emergency situations (or after an emergency) as a foundation for new levees, or other water-control structures. Sandbags are not always an effective measure in the event of flooding because water will eventually seep through the bags and finer materials, like clay, may leak out through the seam. After usage, dry sandbags can be stored for future use. Wet bags may need to be disposed in a landfill as they may be contaminated by chemicals and fecal matter.
The military uses sandbags for field fortifications, or as a temporary measure to protect civilian structures. Because burlap and sand are inexpensive, large protective barriers can be erected cheaply. The friction created by moving
The walrus (Odobenus rosmarus) is a large flippered marine mammal with a discontinuous distribution about the North Pole in the Arctic Ocean and subarctic seas of the Northern Hemisphere. The walrus is the only living species in the Odobenidae family and Odobenus genus. This species is subdivided into three subspecies: the Atlantic walrus (O. r. rosmarus) which lives in the Atlantic Ocean, the Pacific walrus (O. r. divergens) which lives in the Pacific Ocean, and O. r. laptevi, which lives in the Laptev Sea of the Arctic Ocean.
Adult walruses are easily recognized by their prominent tusks, whiskers, and bulkiness. Adult males in the Pacific can weigh more than 1,700 kg (3,700 lb) and, among pinnipeds, are exceeded in size only by the two species of elephant seals. Walruses live mostly in shallow waters above the continental shelves, spending significant amounts of their lives on the sea ice looking for benthic bivalve mollusks to eat. Walruses are relatively long-lived, social animals, and they are considered to be a "keystone species" in the Arctic marine regions.
The walrus has played a prominent role in the cultures of many indigenous Arctic peoples, who have hunted the walrus
The Aenar are a fictional subspecies of the Andorians that made two appearances in the TV series Star Trek: Enterprise in the fourth season Episodes "United" and "The Aenar".In 2154, when Andorian Commander Shran and Starfleet Captain Jonathan Archer visited Andoria, Shran is hurt, the Aenar come to their aid. The subspecies called the Aenar are usually blind, extremely reclusive ice-dwellers with extremely pale white skin, white hair and eyes. They are a telepathic species; the native hominids of Andor are generally believed to have originated among the ice and glaciers of the polar continent in the southern hemisphere. The rare Aenar subspecies now occupies only one ice-encrusted, ancient, underground city.
The secretive, reclusive Aenar are a rare, albino telepathic Andorian subspecies. Each Aenar antenna has a small "V" shaped notch in the cup. Almost mythical, the Aenar had been rumored to dwell in the arctic subterranean caves on Andoria, using old, abandoned Andorian abodes and tunnels. Their continued existence was confirmed by scientists for 50 years before contact was reestablished. The Aenar are known pacifists.
Gareb, an Aenar who used his telepathic abilities to pilot two drone-ships in 2154 after being forced to do so by Romulans.
A black cat is a feline with black fur. It is not a particular breed of cat and may be mixed or of a specific breed. The Bombay, known for its sleek black fur, is an example of a black cat. The all-black pigmentation is equally prevalent in both male and female cats. Their high melanin pigment content causes black cats to have yellow (golden) eyes (irises).
In some cultures black cats are considered good luck, and in others they are considered bad luck.
Any cat whose fur is a single color, including black, is known as a "solid" or "self". A "solid black" cat may be coal black, grayish black, or brownish black. Most solid colored cats result from a recessive gene that suppresses the tabby pattern. Sometimes the tabby pattern is not completely suppressed; faint markings may appear in certain lights, even on a solid black cat. A cat having black fur with white roots is known as a "black smoke."
Black cats can also "rust" in sunlight, the coat turning a lighter brownish shade.
In addition to the Bombay, The Cat Fanciers' Association allows solid black as a color option in 21 other breeds. The color description for those breeds is:
The exceptions are:
The folklore surrounding black cats
Sheep (Ovis aries) are quadrupedal, ruminant mammals typically kept as livestock. Like all ruminants, sheep are members of the order Artiodactyla, the even-toed ungulates. Although the name "sheep" applies to many species in the genus Ovis, in everyday usage it almost always refers to Ovis aries. Numbering a little over one billion, domestic sheep are also the most numerous species of sheep.
Sheep are most likely descended from the wild mouflon of Europe and Asia. One of the earliest animals to be domesticated for agricultural purposes, sheep are raised for fleece, meat (lamb, hogget or mutton) and milk. A sheep's wool is the most widely used animal fiber, and is usually harvested by shearing. Ovine meat is called lamb when from younger animals and mutton when from older ones. Sheep continue to be important for wool and meat today, and are also occasionally raised for pelts, as dairy animals, or as model organisms for science.
Sheep husbandry is practised throughout the majority of the inhabited world, and has been fundamental to many civilizations. In the modern era, Australia, New Zealand, the southern and central South American nations, and the British Isles are most closely
The giant squid (genus: Architeuthis) is a deep-ocean dwelling squid in the family Architeuthidae, represented by as many as eight species. Giant squid can grow to a tremendous size (see Deep-sea gigantism): recent estimates put the maximum size at 13 metres (43 ft) for females and 10 metres (33 ft) for males from caudal fin to the tip of the two long tentacles (second only to the colossal squid at an estimated 14 metres (46 ft), one of the largest living organisms). The mantle is about 2 metres (6.6 ft) long (more for females, less for males), and the length of the squid excluding its tentacles is about 5 metres (16 ft). Claims of specimens measuring 20 metres (66 ft) or more have not been scientifically documented.
On September 30, 2004, researchers from the National Science Museum of Japan and the Ogasawara Whale Watching Association took the first images of a live giant squid in its natural habitat. Several of the 556 photographs were released a year later. The same team successfully filmed a live adult giant squid for the first time on December 4, 2006.
Like all squid, a giant squid has a mantle (torso), eight arms, and two longer tentacles (the longest known tentacles of any
The grasshopper is an insect of the suborder Caelifera in the order Orthoptera. To distinguish it from bush crickets or katydids, it is sometimes referred to as the short-horned grasshopper. Species that change colour and behaviour at high population densities are called locusts.
Grasshoppers have antennae that are generally shorter than their body and short ovipositors. They also have pinchers or mandibles that cut and tear off food. Those species that make easily heard noises usually do so by rubbing the hind femurs against the forewings or abdomen (stridulation), or by snapping the wings in flight. Tympana, if present, are on the sides of the first abdominal segment. The hind femora are typically long and strong, fitted for leaping. Generally they are winged, but hind wings are membranous while front wings (tegmina) are coriaceous and not fit for flight. Females are normally larger than males, with short ovipositors. Males have a single unpaired plate at the end of the abdomen. Females have two pairs of valves ( triangles) at the end of the abdomen used to dig in sand when egg laying.
They are easily confused with the other sub-order of Orthoptera, Ensifera (crickets), but are
A rust monster is a fictional creature from the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy role-playing game that seeks out and consumes metal, often the armor and weaponry of players' characters. Originally inspired by a cheap plastic toy, the rust monster was one of the first monsters specifically created for D&D, and has been included in every edition of D&D, although various aspects of the creature have changed from edition to edition. Although in most editions, the rust monster has been a non-lethal creature with little or no way of physically harming players' characters, it is the rust monster's ability to destroy a character's cherished and expensive weapons and armor in mere seconds that makes it a particularly fearsome opponent.
In the early 1970s, Gary Gygax was playing Chainmail, a wargame that bore some precursors of Dungeons & Dragons. In order to give his players as many different challenges as possible, Gygax was always on the look-out for new monsters. Although he was able to draw on pulp fiction and sword and sorcery stories for many of them, he also looked through dime stores for figurines that could be used in battle. On one of those occasions, he came across a bag of small
In the table-top wargame Warhammer 40,000, Vespid is a world home to an insectoid race of the same name, who are allied with the Tau Empire. They were included in the new revised Codex: Tau Empire.
The Vespid are a humanoid insectoid species from the planet Vespid, a gas giant three light years to the galactic south of the D'yanoi sept. The violet hued, storm wracked stratosphere of the world provides a shallow layer within life has managed to survive. The Vespid live on floating mountains held aloft by the lighter-than-air gases trapped within air pockets inside the rock. They possess reasonably advanced technology but no interstellar travel.
Vespid Stingwings use a 'neutron blaster' which is designed to be a Space Marine killer. The blaster uses Tau technology combined with a type of crystal that only the vespid females can venture down to the planets surface to collect, that are unique to the planet Vespid. The neutron blasters themselves cannot be used by the Tau or other aliens due to the unstable radiation qualities of the weapons, the Vespids themselves protected because of their wings which control the emanated radiation.
In Tau armies, the Vespid are organized into
Bees are flying insects closely related to wasps and ants, and are known for their role in pollination and for producing honey and beeswax. Bees are a monophyletic lineage within the superfamily Apoidea, presently classified by the unranked taxon name Anthophila. There are nearly 20,000 known species of bees in seven to nine recognized families, though many are undescribed and the actual number is probably higher. They are found on every continent except Antarctica, in every habitat on the planet that contains insect-pollinated flowering plants.
Bees are adapted for feeding on nectar and pollen, the former primarily as an energy source and the latter primarily for protein and other nutrients. Most pollen is used as food for larvae.
Bees have a long proboscis (a complex "tongue") that enables them to obtain the nectar from flowers. They have antennae almost universally made up of 13 segments in males and 12 in females, as is typical for the superfamily. Bees all have two pairs of wings, the hind pair being the smaller of the two; in a very few species, one sex or caste has relatively short wings that make flight difficult or impossible, but none are wingless.
The smallest bee is
Geese are waterfowl belonging to the tribe Anserini of the family Anatidae. This tribe comprises the genera Anser (the grey geese), Branta (the black geese) and Chen (the white geese). A number of other birds, mostly related to the shelducks, have "goose" as part of their name. More distantly related members of the Anatidae family are swans, most of which are larger than true geese, and ducks, which are smaller.
The word goose is a direct descendant of Proto-Indo-European root, *ghans-. In Germanic languages, the root gave Old English gōs with the plural gēs and gandres (becoming Modern English goose, geese, and gander, respectively), New High German Gans, Gänse, and Ganter, and Old Norse gās. This term also gave Lithuanian žąsìs, Irish gé (goose, from Old Irish géiss), Latin anser, Greek chēn, Albanian gatë (heron), Sanskrit hamsī, Finnish hanhi, Avestan zāō, Polish gęś, Russian гусь, Czech husa, and Persian ghāz.
The term goose applies to the female in particular while gander applies to the male in particular. Young birds before fledging are called goslings. The collective noun for group of geese on the ground is a gaggle; when in flight, they are called a skein, a team or a
Dynastinae or rhinoceros beetles are a subfamily of the scarab beetle family (Scarabaeidae). Other common names – some for particular groups of rhinoceros beetles – are for example Hercules beetles, unicorn beetles or horn beetles. Over 300 species of rhinoceros beetles are known.
Many rhinoceros beetles are well known for their unique shapes and large sizes. Some famous species are, for example, the Atlas beetle (Chalcosoma atlas), common rhinoceros beetle (Xylotrupes ulysses), elephant beetle (Megasoma elephas), European rhinoceros beetle (Oryctes nasicornis), Hercules beetle (Dynastes hercules), Japanese rhinoceros beetle or kabutomushi (Allomyrina dichotoma), ox beetle (Strategus aloeus) and the unicorn beetle (Dynastes tityus).
They are among the largest of beetles, reaching more than 150 mm (6 in) in length, but are completely harmless to humans because they cannot bite or sting. They have been documented to support items up to 100 times their own weight. Their common names refer to the characteristic horns borne only by the males of most species in the group. Each has a horn on the thorax and another horn pointing forward from the center thorax. The horns are used in
Squid are cephalopods of the order Teuthida, which comprises around 300 species. Like all other cephalopods, squid have a distinct head, bilateral symmetry, a mantle, and arms. Squid, like cuttlefish, have eight arms arranged in pairs and two, usually longer, tentacles. Squid are strong swimmers and certain species can 'fly' for short distances out of the water.
Squid have differentiated from their ancestral molluscs such that the body plan has been condensed antero-posteriorly and extended dorso-ventrally. What before may have been the foot of the ancestor is modified into a complex set of tentacles and highly developed sense organs, including advanced eyes similar to those of vertebrates.
The ancestral shell has been lost, with only an internal gladius, or pen, remaining. The pen is a feather-shaped internal structure that supports the squid's mantle and serves as a site for muscle attachment. It is made of a chitin-like material.
The main body mass is enclosed in the mantle, which has a swimming fin along each side. These fins, unlike in other marine organisms, are not the main source of locomotion in most species.
The skin is covered in chromatophores, which enable the squid to
The tiger (Panthera tigris) is the largest cat species, reaching a total body length of up to 3.3 metres (11 ft) and weighing up to 306 kg (670 lb). It is the third largest land carnivore (behind only the Polar bear and the Brown bear). Its most recognizable feature is a pattern of dark vertical stripes on reddish-orange fur with lighter underparts. It has exceptionally stout teeth, and the canines are the longest among living felids with a crown height of as much as 74.5 mm (2.93 in) or even 90 mm (3.5 in). In zoos, tigers have lived for 20 to 26 years, which also seems to be their longevity in the wild. They are territorial and generally solitary but social animals, often requiring large contiguous areas of habitat that support their prey requirements. This, coupled with the fact that they are indigenous to some of the more densely populated places on Earth, has caused significant conflicts with humans.
Tigers once ranged widely across Asia, from Turkey in the west to the eastern coast of Russia. Over the past 100 years, they have lost 93% of their historic range, and have been extirpated from southwest and central Asia, from the islands of Java and Bali, and from large areas of
The Venus Flytrap (also Venus's Flytrap or Venus' Flytrap), Dionaea muscipula, is a carnivorous plant that catches and digests animal prey—mostly insects and arachnids. Its trapping structure is formed by the terminal portion of each of the plant's leaves and is triggered by tiny hairs on their inner surfaces. When an insect or spider crawling along the leaves contacts a hair, the trap closes if a different hair is contacted within twenty seconds of the first strike. The requirement of redundant triggering in this mechanism serves as a safeguard against a waste of energy in trapping objects with no nutritional value.
Dionaea is a monotypic genus closely related to the waterwheel plant and sundews, all of which belong to the family Droseraceae.
The Venus Flytrap is a small plant whose structure can be described as a rosette of four to seven leaves, which arise from a short subterranean stem that is actually a bulb-like object. Each stem reaches a maximum size of about three to ten centimeters, depending on the time of year; longer leaves with robust traps are usually formed after flowering. Flytraps that have more than 7 leaves are colonies formed by rosettes that have divided
Ants are social insects of the family Formicidae ( /fɔrˈmɪsɨdiː/) and, along with the related wasps and bees, belong to the order Hymenoptera. Ants evolved from wasp-like ancestors in the mid-Cretaceous period between 110 and 130 million years ago and diversified after the rise of flowering plants. More than 12,500 out of an estimated total of 22,000 species have been classified. They are easily identified by their elbowed antennae and a distinctive node-like structure that forms a slender waist.
Ants form colonies that range in size from a few dozen predatory individuals living in small natural cavities to highly organised colonies that may occupy large territories and consist of millions of individuals. Larger colonies consist mostly of sterile wingless females forming castes of "workers", "soldiers", or other specialised groups. Nearly all ant colonies also have some fertile males called "drones" and one or more fertile females called "queens". The colonies sometimes are described as superorganisms because the ants appear to operate as a unified entity, collectively working together to support the colony.
Ants have colonised almost every landmass on Earth. The only places
Copepods ( /ˈkoʊpɪpɒd/; meaning "oar-feet") are a group of small crustaceans found in the sea and nearly every freshwater habitat. Some species are planktonic (drifting in sea waters), some are benthic (living on the ocean floor), and some continental species may live in limno-terrestrial habitats and other wet terrestrial places, such as swamps, under leaf fall in wet forests, bogs, springs, ephemeral ponds and puddles, damp moss, or water-filled recesses (phytotelmata) of plants such as bromeliads and pitcher plants. Many live underground in marine and freshwater caves, sinkholes, or stream beds. Copepods are sometimes used as bioindicators.
Copepods form a subclass belonging to the subphylum Crustacea (crustaceans). Copepods are divided into ten orders. Some 13,000 species of copepods are known, and 2,800 of them live in freshwaters.
Copepods are typically 1 to 2 millimetres (0.04 to 0.08 in) long, with a teardrop shaped body and large antennae. Although like other crustaceans they have an armoured exoskeleton, they are so small that in most species this thin armour, and the entire body, is almost totally transparent. Some polar copepods reach 1 centimetre (0.39 in). Most
The Cylons are a cybernetic civilization at war with the Twelve Colonies of humanity in the Battlestar Galactica science fiction franchise, in the original 1978 and 1980 series, the 2004 reimagining, as well as the spin-off prequel series, Caprica. In the 1978 series, the Cylon is also the name of the race who created the robot Cylons.
The nature and origins of Cylons differ greatly between the two Battlestar Galactica continuities. However, both series feature Cylon Raiders, Cylon Basestars and Cylon Centurions. The prequel series, Caprica, focuses on the creation of the Cylons, which differs from all the previous Battlestar Galactica series.
The Cylons of the 1978/1980 series are not the mechanical foils seen throughout the series, but an advanced reptilian race who created the robots (who were referred to as Cylons within the show) to serve them, maintain their vast empire and to man their military forces in the face of a sudden population drop that eventually led to the Cylons' extinction — seemingly overnight. This fact is briefly mentioned in the 1978 movie-length premiere of the series (near the end of episode 2 in syndication) when Apollo relates the Cylons' origin to
A gnoll or gnole is a fictional humanoid creature - a cross between a gnome and a troll. They first appeared in Lord Dunsany's story in The Book of Wonder: How Nuth Would Have Practised His Art upon the Gnoles and subsequently reappeared in Margaret St. Clair's, The Man Who Sold Rope to the Gnoles and Gary Gygax's Dungeons & Dragons. In Middle English the word noll could refer to a stupid or very drunk person.
In the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy role-playing game, gnolls greatly resemble humanoid hyenas. They are usually between seven and eight feet tall, weighing around 250 to 320 pounds, and use armor made of horn, metal, or leather. Gnolls are generally depicted in the game world as feral nomads who kill and pillage without warning. Their whole bodies are covered in reddish-brown fur which becomes shorter as it surrounds their faces and clawed hands to reveal grey colored skin. Their pelts vary from mono-colored to spotted and their eyes are either yellow or black.
Within the context of the Dungeons & Dragons game, one notable subrace of gnoll is the flind, which is shorter, broader, and stronger than other gnolls; flinds are often found leading a tribe or settlement of gnolls.
In the fictional universe of the animated series Gargoyles, the name Oberon's children is given to the so-called Third Race of beings (the other two being humans and gargoyles).
Though not literally the offspring of Oberon, he is nevertheless the leader of the entire race, serving both as ruler and father-figure. In general, it seems the species are referred to as children of their current ruler, as they were called "Mab's children" when still governed by Oberon's mother, Queen Mab. Oberon ascended to the position both by virtue of being Mab's son, but also because he had been the one to overthrow her.
Members of the race range from fairies to gods to other mythological creatures that were encountered during the "World Tour" arc during the show's second season. They are shown to possess fantastic and supernatural powers, which vary from individual to individual, although most do have the power to change shape and appearance at will alongside other abilities. If they shapeshift fully into a mortal form, they are bound completely by the nature of that mortal body. They suffer all the frailties typically associated with that body, age as a mortal, and lose all their magical powers
The word oyster is used as a common name for a number of distinct groups of bivalve molluscs which live in marine or brackish habitats. The valves are highly calcified.
Some kinds of oyster are commonly consumed, cooked or raw, by humans as a delicacy. Other kinds such as pearl oysters, generally not eaten by humans, are harvested for the pearl produced within the mantle.
First attested in English 17th century, the word oyster comes from Old French oistre, in turn from Latin ostrea, the feminine form of ostreum, which is the latinisation of the Greek ὄστρεον (ostreon), "oyster". Compare ὀστέον (osteon), "bone".
True oysters are members of the family Ostreidae. This family includes the edible oysters, which mainly belong to the genera Ostrea, Crassostrea, Ostreola and Saccostrea. Examples include the Belon oyster, Eastern oyster, Olympia oyster, Pacific oyster, and the Sydney rock oyster,
Almost all shell-bearing mollusks can secrete pearls, yet most are not very valuable.
Pearl oysters are not closely related to true oysters, being members of a distinct family, the feathered oysters (Pteriidae). Both cultured pearls and natural pearls can be obtained from pearl oysters, though
Pheasants refer to some members of the Phasianinae (Horsfield, 1821) subfamily of Phasianidae in the order Galliformes.
Pheasants are characterised by strong sexual dimorphism, males being highly ornate with bright colours and adornments such as wattles and long tails. Males are usually larger than females and have longer tails. Males play no part in rearing the young. Pheasants typically eat seeds and some insects.
The best-known is the Common Pheasant, which is widespread throughout the world in introduced feral populations and in farm operations. Various other pheasant species are popular in aviaries, such as the Golden Pheasant (Chrysolophus pictus).
This list is ordered to show presumed relationships between species
Euplocamus and Gennceus are older names more or less corresponding to the current Lophura.
These old genera were used for:
The poodle is a breed of dog. The breed is found officially in toy, miniature, and standard sizes, with many coat colors. Originally bred as a type of water dog, the poodle is skillful in many dog sports, including agility, obedience, tracking, and even herding. Poodles have taken top honors in many conformation shows, including "Best in Show" at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show in 1991 and 2002, and at the World Dog Show in 2007 and 2010.
The poodle is believed to have originated in Germany, where it was known as the Pudelhund. Pudel (cognate with the English word "puddle"), is derived from the Low German verb meaning "to splash about", and the word Hund in German means "dog". The breed was standardized in France, where it was commonly used as a water retriever.
The European mainland had known the poodle long before it was brought to England. Drawings by German artist Albrecht Dürer established the breed in the 15th and 16th centuries. It was the principal pet dog of the late 18th century in Spain, as shown by the paintings of the Spanish artist Francisco Goya. France had toy poodles as pampered favorites during the reign of Louis XVI at about the same period.
The poodle has
The Technarchy, or Technarchs, are a cybernetic, shapeshifting, fictional species of extraterrestrial origin in the Marvel Comics' universe, created by writer Chris Claremont and artist Bill Sienkiewicz. Its most notable members are the New Mutants member Warlock and his "siredam," the supervillain called the Magus. The Technarchy first appeared in the person of Warlock in New Mutants vol. 1 #21 (November 1984).
The Technarchy is a race of giant techno-organic entities with very aggressive natures. They travel the universe looking for things on which to feed, which can be organic or mechanical. They feed by infecting their prey with the Transmode Virus, converting it into techno-organic matter, from which they then drain the energy, or "lifeglow". If the "lifeglow" is not drained from organic creatures after infection, then Phalanx are formed, creatures who maintain hiveminds, unlike the highly individualistic Technarchs, and who are inherently coded to send a message to the Technarchy once they reach a critical mass. The Technarchy, who consider Phalanx to be abominations, exterminate all such "nests" upon receiving the messages.
The Technarch homeworld was called "Kvch," is
Toucans are members of the family Ramphastidae of near passerine birds from the Neotropics. The Ramphastidae family is most closely related to the American barbets. They are brightly marked and have large, often colorful bills. The family includes five genera and about forty different species. The name of this bird group is derived from the Tupi word tukana, via Portuguese.
Toucans range in size from the Lettered Aracari (Pteroglossus inscriptus), at 130 g (4.6 oz) and 29 cm (11.5 inches), to the Toco Toucan (Ramphastos toco), at 680 g (1.5 lb) and 63 cm (29 inches). Their bodies are short (of comparable size to a crow's) and compact. The tail is rounded and varies in length, from half the length to the whole length of the body. The neck is short and thick. The wings are small, as they are forest-dwelling birds who only need to travel short distances, and are often of about the same span as the bill-tip-to-tail-tip measurements of the bird.
The legs of the toucan are strong and rather short. Their toes are arranged in pairs with the first and fourth toes turned backward. The majority of toucans do not show any sexual dimorphism in their coloration, the genus Selenidera being the
Vulture is the name given to two groups of convergently evolved scavenging birds, the New World Vultures including the well-known Californian and Andean Condors, and the Old World Vultures including the birds which are seen scavenging on carcasses of dead animals on African plains. New World Vultures are found in North and South America, Old World Vultures in Europe, Africa and Asia, meaning that between the two groups, Vultures are found on every continent except Australia and Antarctica.
A particular characteristic of many vultures is a bald head, devoid of normal feathers. This helps to keep the head clean when feeding. Research has shown that the bare skin may play an important role in thermoregulation.
A group of vultures is called a wake, committee, venue, kettle, or volt. The term kettle refers to vultures in flight, while committee, volt, and venue refer to vultures resting in trees. Wake is reserved for a group of vultures that are feeding. The word Geier (taken from the German language) does not have a precise meaning in ornithology, and it is occasionally used to refer to a vulture in English, as in some poetry.
Vultures are classified into two groups: Old World Vultures
A werecat (also written in a hyphenated form as were-cat) is a therianthropic creature of folklore, horror, and occultism, described as being a shape-shifter similar to a werewolf.
Depending on the story in question, the species involved can be a domestic cat, a tiger, a lion, a leopard, a lynx, or any other type, including some that are purely fantastical felines. Typically, an individual werecat can only transform to one unique feline, not to a number of different species, and each individual type of werecat may be known by a more species-specific term such as "werelion". The word "werecat" was not coined until the late 19th century, so it was not directly used in legends from earlier eras, only by later folklorists' commentary.
European folklore usually depicts werecats who transform into domestic cats. Some European werecats became giant domestic cats or panthers. They are generally labelled witches, even though they may have no magical ability other than self-transformation. During the witch trials, the official Church doctrine stated that all shapeshifters, including werewolves, were witches whether they were male or female
African legends describe people who turn into lions
A witch-hunt is a search for witches or evidence of witchcraft, often involving moral panic, mass hysteria and lynching, but in historical instances also legally sanctioned and involving official witchcraft trials. The classical period of witchhunts in Europe and North America falls into the Early Modern period or about 1480 to 1750, spanning the upheavals of the Reformation and the Thirty Years' War, resulting in an estimated 40,000 to 60,000 executions.
The last executions of people convicted as witches in Europe took place in the 18th century. In the Kingdom of Great Britain, witchcraft ceased to be an act punishable by law with the Witchcraft Act of 1735. In Germany, sorcery remained punishable by law into the late 18th century. Contemporary witch-hunts are reported from Sub-Saharan Africa, India and Papua New Guinea. Official legislation against witchcraft is still found in Saudi Arabia and Cameroon. The term "witch-hunt" since the 1930s has also been in use as a metaphor to refer to moral panics in general (frantic persecution of perceived enemies). This usage is especially associated with the Second Red Scare of the 1950s (the McCarthyist persecution of communists in the
A camel is an even-toed ungulate within the genus Camelus, bearing distinctive fatty deposits known as humps on its back. The two surviving species of camel are the dromedary, or one-humped camels, which are native to the Middle East and the Horn of Africa; and Bactrian, or two-humped camels, which inhabit Central Asia. Both species have been domesticated; they provide milk, meat, hair for textiles or goods such as felted pouches, and are working animals.
The term "camel" is derived via Latin and Greek from Hebrew or Phoenician gāmāl, possibly from a verb root meaning to bear or carry (related to Arabic jamala).
Camel is also used more broadly to describe any of the six camel-like mammals in the family Camelidae: the two true camels, and the four South American camelids: the llama, alpaca, guanaco, and vicuña.
The average life expectancy of a camel is 40 to 50 years. A fully grown adult camel stands 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in) at the shoulder and 2.15 m (7 ft 1 in) at the hump. The hump rises about 75 cm (30 in) out of its body. Camels can run at up to 65 km/h (40 mph) in short bursts and sustain speeds of up to 40 km/h (25 mph).
The male dromedary camel has in its neck an unusual organ
In traditional belief and fiction, a ghost is the soul or spirit of a deceased person or animal that can appear, in visible form or other manifestation, to the living. Descriptions of the apparition of ghosts vary widely from an invisible presence to translucent or barely visible wispy shapes, to realistic, lifelike visions. The deliberate attempt to contact the spirit of a deceased person is known as necromancy, or in spiritism as a séance.
The belief in manifestations of the spirits of the dead is widespread, dating back to animism or ancestor worship in pre-literate cultures. Certain religious practices—funeral rites, exorcisms, and some practices of spiritualism and ritual magic—are specifically designed to appease the spirits of the dead. Ghosts are generally described as solitary essences that haunt particular locations, objects, or people they were associated with in life, though stories of phantom armies, ghost trains, phantom ships, and even ghost animals have also been recounted.
The English word ghost continues Old English gást, from a hypothetical Common Germanic *gaistaz. It is common to West Germanic, but lacking in North and East Germanic (the equivalent word in
The hammerhead sharks are a group of sharks in the family Sphyrnidae, so named for the unusual and distinctive structure of their heads, which are flattened and laterally extended into a "hammer" shape called a "cephalofoil". Most hammerhead species are placed in the genus Sphyrna while the winghead shark is placed in its own genus, Eusphyra. Many not necessarily mutually exclusive functions have been proposed for the cephalofoil, including sensory reception, maneuvering, and prey manipulation. Hammerheads are found worldwide in warmer waters along coastlines and continental shelves. Unlike most sharks, hammerheads usually swim in schools during the day, becoming solitary hunters at night. Some of these schools can be found near Malpelo Island in Colombia, Cocos Island off Costa Rica, and near Molokai Island in Hawaii. Large schools are also seen in southern and eastern Africa.
The nine known species range from 0.9 to 6 m (3.0 to 20 ft) long and weigh from 3 to 580 kg (6.6 to 1,300 lb). Although several hammerhead species are quite large, these are more slender and streamlined compared to other large sharks, which undoubtedly increase their speed and manuverability in the water.
The housefly (also house fly, house-fly or common housefly), Musca domestica, is a fly of the suborder Cyclorrhapha. It is the most common of all domestic flies, accounting for about 91% of all flies in human habitations, and indeed one of the most widely distributed insects, found all over the world. It is considered a pest that can carry serious diseases.
The adults are 8–12 mm long. Their thorax is gray, with four longitudinal dark lines on the back. The whole body is covered with hair-like projections. The females are slightly larger than the males, and have a much larger space between their red compound eyes. The mass of pupae can range from about 8 to 20 mg under different conditions.
Like other Diptera (meaning "two-winged"), houseflies have only one pair of wings; the hind pair is reduced to small halteres that aid in flight stability. Characteristically, the media vein (M1+2 or fourth long vein of the wing) shows a sharp upward bend.
Species that appear similar to the housefly include:
Each female fly can lay approximately 501 eggs in several batches of about 75 to 151. The eggs are white and are about 1.2 mm in length. Within a day, larvae (maggots) hatch from the eggs;
The Hen Harrier (Circus cyaneus) or Northern Harrier (in the Americas) is a bird of prey. It breeds throughout the northern parts of the northern hemisphere in Canada and the northernmost USA, and in northern Eurasia. This species is polytypic, with two subspecies. Marsh Hawk is a historical name for the American form.
It migrates to more southerly areas in winter. Eurasian birds move to southern Europe and southern temperate Asia, and American breeders to the southernmost USA, Mexico, and Central America. In the mildest regions, such as France, Great Britain, and the southern US, Hen Harriers may be present all year, but the higher ground is largely deserted in winter.
The Hen Harrier is 41–52 cm (16–20 in) long with a 97–122 cm (38–48 in) wingspan. It resembles other harriers in having distinct male and female plumages. The sexes also differ in weight, with males weighing 290 to 400 g (10 to 14 oz), with an average of 350 g (12 oz), and females weighing 390 to 750 g (14 to 26 oz), with an average of 530 g (19 oz). Among standard measurements, the wing chord is 32.8 to 40.6 cm (12.9 to 16.0 in), the tail is 19.3 to 25.8 cm (7.6 to 10.2 in) and the tarsus is 7.1 to 8.9 cm (2.8 to
Oni (鬼) are creatures from Japanese folklore, variously translated as demons, devils, ogres or trolls. They are popular characters in Japanese art, literature and theatre.
Depictions of oni vary widely but usually portray them as hideous, gigantic ogre-like creatures with sharp claws, wild hair, and two long horns growing from their heads. They are humanoid for the most part, but occasionally, they are shown with unnatural features such as odd numbers of eyes or extra fingers and toes. Their skin may be any number of colors, but red and blue are particularly common.
They are often depicted wearing tiger-skin loincloths and carrying iron clubs, called kanabō (金棒). This image leads to the expression "oni with an iron club" (鬼に金棒, oni-ni-kanabō), that is, to be invincible or undefeatable. It can also be used in the sense of "strong beyond strong", or having one's natural quality enhanced or supplemented by the use of some tool.
The word "oni" is sometimes speculated to be derived from on, the on'yomi reading of a character (隠) meaning to hide or conceal, as oni were originally invisible spirits or gods which caused disasters, disease, and other unpleasant things. These nebulous beings
A rooster, also known as a cockerel, cock (from Old English coc) or chanticleer, is a male chicken (Gallus gallus). The female is called a hen.
Immature male chickens less than one year old are called cockerels. The term "rooster" originates in the United States, and the term is widely used throughout North America, as well as Australia and New Zealand. In the United Kingdom and Ireland the older term "cockerel" is more commonly used.
"Cock" is in general use as the name for a male of other species of bird, for example "Cock sparrow". "Roosting" is the action of perching aloft to sleep at night, and is done by both sexes. The rooster is polygamous, but cannot guard several nests of eggs at once. He guards the general area where his hens are nesting, and will attack other roosters that enter his territory. During the daytime, he usually sits on a high perch, usually 3–5 feet off the ground to serve as a lookout for his flock. He will sound a distinctive alarm call if predators are nearby.
The rooster is often portrayed as crowing at the break of dawn ("cock-a-doodle-doo") and will almost always start crowing before 4 months of age. He can often be seen sitting on fence posts or
The common chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes), also known as the robust chimpanzee, is a species of great ape. Colloquially, the common chimpanzee is often called the chimpanzee (or "chimp"), though technically this term refers to both species in the genus Pan: the common chimpanzee and the closely related bonobo, formerly called the pygmy chimpanzee. Evidence from fossils and DNA sequencing show both species of chimpanzees are the sister group to the modern human lineage.
The common chimpanzee is covered in coarse black hair, but has a bare face, fingers, toes, palms of the hands and soles of the feet. It is considered more robust than the bonobo, weighing between 40 and 65 kg (88 and 140 lb) and measuring approximately 1.6 to 1.3 m (5 ft 3 in to 4 ft 3 in) from head to tail. Its gestation period is eight months. The infant is weaned at about three years old, but usually maintains a close relationship with its mother for several more years; it reaches puberty at the age of eight to 10, and its lifespan in captivity is about 50 years.
The common chimpanzee lives in groups which range in size from 15 to 150 members, although individuals travel and forage in much smaller groups during the
The coyote (US /kaɪˈoʊtiː/ or /ˈkaɪ.oʊt/, UK /kɔɪˈjoʊteɪ/ or /kɔɪˈjoʊt/; Canis latrans), also known as the American jackal or the prairie wolf, is a species of canine found throughout North and Central America, ranging from Panama in the south, north through Mexico, the United States and Canada. It occurs as far north as Alaska and all but the northernmost portions of Canada.
Currently, 19 subspecies are recognized, with 16 in Canada, Mexico and the United States, and three in Central America. Unlike the related gray wolf, which is Eurasian in origin, evolutionary theory suggests the coyote evolved in North America during the Pleistocene epoch 1.81 million years ago (mya) alongside the dire wolf. Although not closely related, the coyote evolved separately to fill roughly the same ecological niche in the Americas that is filled in Eurasia and Africa by the similarly sized jackals. Unlike the wolf, the coyote's range has expanded in the wake of human civilization, and coyotes readily reproduce in metropolitan areas.
The name "coyote" is borrowed from Mexican Spanish coyote, ultimately derived from the Nahuatl word cóyotl. Its scientific name, Canis latrans, means "barking dog" in
A crocodile is any species belonging to the family Crocodylidae (sometimes classified instead as the subfamily Crocodylinae). The term can also be used more loosely to include all extant members of the order Crocodilia: i.e. the true crocodiles, the alligators and caimans (family Alligatoridae) and the gharials (family Gavialidae), as well as the Crocodylomorpha, which include prehistoric crocodile relatives and ancestors.
Member species of the family Crocodylidae are large aquatic reptiles that live throughout the tropics in Africa, Asia, the Americas and Australia. Crocodiles tend to congregate in freshwater habitats such as rivers, lakes, wetlands and sometimes in brackish water. They feed mostly on vertebrates - fish, reptiles, and mammals, and sometimes on invertebrates - molluscs and crustaceans, depending on species. They first appeared during the Eocene epoch, about 55 million years ago.
The word "crocodile" comes from the Ancient Greek κροκόδιλος (crocodilos), "lizard," used in the phrase ho krokódilos ho potamós, "the lizard of the (Nile) river".
There are several variant Greek forms of the word attested, including the later form κροκόδειλος (crocodeilos) found
Found in fictional universe:Umineko no Naku Koro ni
A demon is a supernatural, often malevolent being prevalent in religion, occultism, literature, and folklore. The original Greek word daimon does not carry the negative connotation initially understood by implementation of the Koine δαιμόνιον (daimonion), and later ascribed to any cognate words sharing the root.
In Ancient Near Eastern religions as well as in the Abrahamic traditions, including ancient and medieval Christian demonology, a demon is considered an unclean spirit, more specifically an evil angel, which may cause demonic possession, calling for an exorcism. In Western occultism and Renaissance magic, which grew out of an amalgamation of Greco-Roman magic, Jewish demonology, and Christian tradition, a demon is a spiritual entity that may be conjured and controlled.
The Ancient Greek word δαίμων daimōn denotes a spirit or divine power, much like the Latin genius or numen. Daimōn most likely came from the Greek verb daiesthai (to divide, distribute). The Greek conception of a daimōns notably appears in the works of Plato, where it describes the divine inspiration of Socrates. To distinguish the classical Greek concept from its later Christian interpretation, the former is
In fairy tales, a fairy godmother is a fairy with magical powers who acts as a mentor or parent to someone, in the role that an actual godparent was expected to play in many societies. In Perrault's Cinderella, he concludes the tale with the cynical moral that no personal advantages will suffice without proper connections. The fairy godmother is a special case of the donor.
Actual fairy godmothers are rare in fairy tales, but became familiar figures because of the popularity of the literary fairy tales of Madame d'Aulnoy and other précieuses, and Charles Perrault. Many other supernatural patrons feature in fairy tales; these include various kinds of animals and the spirit of a dead mother. The fairy godmother has her roots in the figures of the Fates; this is especially clear in Sleeping Beauty, where they decree her fate, and are associated with spinning.
In the tales of précieuses and later successors, the fairy godmother acts in a manner atypical of fairies in actual folklore belief; they are preoccupied with the character and fortunes of their human protegees, whereas fairies in folklore had their own interests.
Typically, the fairy godmother's protégé is a prince or princess
Fox is a common name for many species of omnivorous mammals belonging to the Canidae family. Foxes are small to medium-sized canids (slightly smaller than a medium-sized domestic dog), characterized by possessing a long narrow snout, and a bushy tail (or brush).
Members of about 37 species are referred to as foxes, of which only 12 species actually belong to the Vulpes genus of "true foxes". By far the most common and widespread species of fox is the red fox (Vulpes vulpes), although various species are found on almost every continent. The presence of fox-like carnivores all over the globe, together with their widespread reputation for cunning, has contributed to their appearance in popular culture and folklore in many societies around the world (see also Foxes in culture). The hunting of foxes with packs of hounds, long an established pursuit in Europe, especially the British Isles, was exported by European settlers to various parts of the New World.
The Modern English word "fox" is Old English, and comes from the Proto-Germanic word fukh – compare German Fuchs, Gothic fauho, Old Norse foa and Dutch vos. It corresponds to the Proto-Indo-European word puk- meaning "tail of it"
The German Shepherd Dog (German: Deutscher Schäferhund), also known as an Alsatian or just the German Shepherd, is a breed of large-sized dog that originated in Germany. The German Shepherd is a relatively new breed of dog, with its origin dating to 1899. As part of the Herding Group, the German Shepherd is a working dog developed originally for herding and guarding sheep. Because of its strength, intelligence and abilities in obedience training it is often employed in police and military roles around the world. German Shepherds currently account for 4.6% of all dogs registered with the American Kennel Club. Due to its loyal and protective nature, the German Shepherd is one of the most registered of breeds.
In Europe during the 1800s, attempts were being made to standardize breeds. The dogs were bred to preserve traits that assisted in their job of herding sheep and protecting flocks from predators. In Germany this was practiced within local communities, where shepherds selected and bred dogs that they believed had traits necessary for herding sheep, such as intelligence, speed, strength, and keen senses of smell. The results were dogs that were able to perform admirably in their
A hopping mouse is any of about ten different Australian native mice in the genus Notomys. They are rodents, not marsupials, and their ancestors are thought to have arrived from Asia about 5 million years ago.
All are brown or fawn, fading to pale grey or white underneath, have very long tails and, as the common name implies, well-developed hind legs. Half of the hopping mouse species have become extinct since European colonisation. The primary cause is probably predation from introduced foxes or cats, coupled with competition for food from introduced rabbits and cattle. The hopping mouse's primary diet is seeds. Australian hopping mouse can concentrate urine to as high as 10,000 mOsm/L. This allows the mouse to survive in the desert without drinking water.
Humans (Homo sapiens) are primates of the family Hominidae, and the only living species of the genus Homo. They originated in Africa, where they reached anatomical modernity about 200,000 years ago and began to exhibit full behavioral modernity around 50,000 years ago.
The human lineage diverged from the last common ancestor with its closest living relative, the chimpanzee, some five million years ago, evolving into the Australopithecines and eventually the genus Homo. The first Homo species to move out of Africa was Homo erectus, the African variety of which, together with Homo heidelbergensis, is considered to be the immediate ancestor of modern humans. Homo sapiens proceeded to colonize the continents, arriving in Eurasia 125,000-60,000 years ago, Australia around 40,000 years ago, the Americas around 15,000 years ago, and remote islands such as Hawaii, Easter Island, Madagascar, and New Zealand between the years AD 300 and 1280.
As early as 12,000 years ago, humans began to practice sedentary agriculture, domesticating plants and animals which allowed for the growth of civilization. Humans subsequently established various forms of government, religion, and culture
A humanoid (/ˈhjuːmənɔɪd/; from English human and -oid "resembling") is something that has an appearance resembling a human being. The term first appeared in 1912 to refer to fossils which were morphologically similar to, but not identical with, those of the human skeleton. Although this usage was common in the sciences for much of the 20th century, it is now considered rare. More generally, the term can refer to anything with uniquely human characteristics and/or adaptations, such as possessing opposable appendage (thumbs) or the ability to walk in an upright position.
A humanoid robot is a robot that is based on the general structure of a human, such as a robot that walks on two legs and has an upper torso, or a robot that has two arms, two legs and a head. A humanoid robot does not necessarily look convincingly like a real person, for example the ASIMO humanoid robot has a helmet instead of a face.
An android (male) or gynoid (female) is a humanoid robot designed to look as much like a real person as possible, although these words are frequently perceived to be synonymous with humanoid.
While there are many humanoid robots in fictional stories, some real humanoid robots have
An imp is a mythological being similar to a fairy or demon, frequently described in folklore and superstition. The word may perhaps derive from the term ympe, used to denote a young grafted tree.
Originating from Germanic folklore, the imp was a small lesser demon. It should also be noted that demons in Germanic legends were not necessarily always evil. Imps were often mischievous rather than evil or harmful, and in some regions they were portrayed as attendants of the gods.
Imps are often shown as small and not very attractive creatures. Their behavior is described as being wild and uncontrollable, much the same as fairies, and in some cultures they were considered the same beings, both sharing the same sense of free spirit and enjoyment of all things fun. It was later in history that people began to associate fairies with being good and imps with being malicious and evil. However, both creatures were fond of pranks and misleading people. Most of the time, the pranks were harmless fun, but some could be upsetting and harmful, such as switching babies or leading travellers astray in places with which they were not familiar. Though imps are often thought of as being immortal, many
The lion (Panthera leo) is one of the four big cats in the genus Panthera and a member of the family Felidae. With some males exceeding 250 kg (550 lb) in weight, it is the second-largest living cat after the tiger. Wild lions currently exist in sub-Saharan Africa and in Asia, with an endangered remnant population in Gir Forest National Park in India, having disappeared from North Africa and Southwest Asia in historic times. Until the late Pleistocene, about 10,000 years ago, the lion was the most widespread large land mammal after humans. They were found in most of Africa, across Eurasia from western Europe to India, and in the Americas from the Yukon to Peru. The lion is a vulnerable species, having seen a major population decline of 30–50% over the past two decades in its African range. Lion populations are untenable outside designated reserves and national parks. Although the cause of the decline is not fully understood, habitat loss and conflicts with humans are currently the greatest causes of concern. Within Africa, the West African lion population is particularly endangered.
Lions live for 10–14 years in the wild, while in captivity they can live longer than 20 years. In
Mi-go ("The Abominable Ones") is a Himalayan nickname for a race of extraterrestrials in the Cthulhu Mythos created by H. P. Lovecraft and others. The name was first applied to the creatures in Lovecraft's short story "The Whisperer in Darkness" (1931), elaborating on a reference to 'What fungi sprout in Yuggoth' in his sonnet cycle Fungi from Yuggoth (1929–30) which described the contrasting vegetation on alien dream-worlds.
The "Mi-go" are large, pinkish, fungoid, crustacean-like entities the size of a man; where a head would be, they have a "convoluted ellipsoid" composed of pyramided, fleshy rings and covered in antennae. According to two reports in the original short story, their bodies consist of a form of matter that does not occur naturally on Earth; for this reason, they do not register on ordinary photographic film. They are capable of going into suspended animation until softened and reheated by the sun or some other source of heat. They are about five feet (1.5 m) long, and their crustacean-like bodies bear numerous sets of paired appendages. They possess a pair of membranous bat-like wings which are used to fly through the "aether" of outer space (a scientific concept
Found in fictional universe:The Sacred Band of Stepsons universe
In the Sacred Band of Stepsons universe, the Moerae follow the fated dead of the Theban Sacred Band to Sanctuary after Tempus and the Stepsons rescue them. Twice they attend the fetes on the lighthouse spit., discharging their duties under a special dispensation, acting directly upon the lives of those gathered there.
Mudskippers are members of the subfamily Oxudercinae (tribe Periophthalmini), within the family Gobiidae (Gobies). They are completely amphibious fish, fish that can use their pectoral fins to walk on land. Being amphibious, they are uniquely adapted to intertidal habitats, unlike most fish in such habitats which survive the retreat of the tide by hiding under wet seaweed or in tidal pools. Mudskippers are quite active when out of water, feeding and interacting with one another, for example to defend their territories. They are found in tropical, subtropical and temperate regions, including the Indo-Pacific and the Atlantic coast of Africa.
Compared with fully aquatic gobies, these fish present a range of peculiar behavioural and physiological adaptations to an amphibious lifestyle. These include:
Even when their burrow is submerged, mudskippers maintain an air pocket inside it, which allows them to breathe in conditions of very low oxygen concentration.
The genus Periophthalmus is by far the most diverse and widespread genus of mudskipper. Eighteen species have been described. Periophthalmus argentilineatus is one of the most widespread and well known species. It can be found in
Pikachu (Japanese: ピカチュウ, Hepburn: Pikachū) /ˈpiːkəˌtʃuː/ is one of the species of Pokémon creatures from the Pokémon media franchise—a collection of video games, anime, manga, books, trading cards, and other media created by Satoshi Tajiri. As do all Pokémon, Pikachu fight other Pokémon in battles central to the anime, manga, and games of the series. Pikachu is among the most recognizable Pokémon, largely because a Pikachu is a central character in the Pokémon anime series. Pikachu is widely considered the most popular Pokémon, is regarded as the official mascot of the Pokémon franchise, and has become an icon of Japanese culture in recent years.
Pikachu evolves from a Pichu when it levels up with high happiness, and evolves into a Raichu with a "Thunderstone". Within the world of the Pokémon franchise, Pikachu are often found in houses, forests, plains, and occasionally near mountains, islands, and electrical sources (such as power plants), on most continents throughout the fictional world. As an Electric-type Pokémon, Pikachu can store electricity in its cheeks and release it in lightning-based attacks. Its Pokedex entry states that it is a Mouse Pokemon.
Developed by Game Freak
Porcupines are rodents with a coat of sharp spines, or quills, that defend and camouflage them from predators. They are indigenous to the Americas, southern Asia, and Africa. Porcupines are the third largest of the rodents, behind the capybara and the beaver. Most porcupines are about 25–36 in (63–91 cm) long, with an 8–10 in (20–25 cm) long tail. Weighing between 12–35 lb (5.4–16 kg), they are rounded, large and slow. Porcupines come in various shades of brown, grey, and the unusual white. Porcupines' spiny protection resembles that of the unrelated erinaceomorph hedgehogs and monotreme echidnas.
The common porcupine is a herbivore. It eats leaves, herbs, twigs and green plants like skunk cabbage and clover and in the winter it may eat bark. The North American porcupine often climbs trees to find food. The African porcupine is not a climber and forages on the ground. It is mostly nocturnal, but will sometimes forage for food in the day. Porcupines have become a pest in Kenya and are eaten as a delicacy.
The name porcupine comes from Middle French porc espin (spined pig). A regional American name for the animal is quill pig.
A porcupine is any of 29 species of rodent belonging to
A primate (/ˈpraɪmeɪt/ PRY-mayt) is a mammal of the order Primates (/praɪˈmeɪtiːz/ pry-MAY-teez; Latin: "prime, first rank"), which contains prosimians and simians. Primates arose from ancestors that lived in the trees of tropical forests, and many primate characteristics represent adaptations to life in this challenging environment. All but a few primate species remain at least partly arboreal.
With the exception of humans, who inhabit every continent, most primates live in tropical or subtropical regions of the Americas, Africa and Asia. They range in size from Madame Berthe's mouse lemur, which weighs only 30 grams (1 oz), to the eastern lowland gorilla, weighing over 200 kilograms (440 lb). According to fossil evidence, the primitive ancestors of primates may have existed in the late Cretaceous period around 65 million years ago; the oldest known primate is the Late Paleocene Plesiadapis, circa 55–58 million years ago. Molecular clock studies suggest the primate branch may be even older, originating in the mid-Cretaceous period around 85 mya.
Order Primates has traditionally been divided into two main groupings: prosimians and anthropoids (simians). Prosimians have
The Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis) is a bird of prey, one of three species colloquially known in the United States as the "chickenhawk," though it rarely preys on standard sized chickens. It breeds throughout most of North America, from western Alaska and northern Canada to as far south as Panama and the West Indies, and is one of the most common buteos in North America. Red-tailed Hawks can acclimate to all the biomes within its range. There are fourteen recognized subspecies, which vary in appearance and range. It is one of the largest members of the genus Buteo in North America, typically weighing from 690 to 1600 grams (1.5 to 3.5 pounds) and measuring 45–65 cm (18 to 26 in) in length, with a wingspan from 110 to 145 cm (43 to 57 in). The Red-tailed Hawk displays sexual dimorphism in size, with females averaging about 25% heavier than males
The Harlan's Hawk (B. j. harlani), often considered a separate species, is treated below in the Taxonomy section.
The Red-tailed Hawk occupies a wide range of habitats and altitudes, including deserts, grasslands, coniferous and deciduous forests, tropical rainforests, agricultural fields and urban areas. It lives throughout the North