Some 11 Species-Bending Animals You Never Knew Existed.

The animal world is filled with funny-looking combinations of creatures that most people have no idea about. While these animals might not be actual genetic crossbreeds – they certainly look like it! Here’s the list that will let you impress your friends with your unusual knowledge of fauna:

1. Anteater + armadillo = pangolin

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This mammal, which resembles the armadillo (no relation) gets its name  from the Malay word “pengguling”, meaning “something that rolls up”. It is native to tropical parts of Africa and Asia. Pangolins are covered in large keratin scales for protection – the only mammal with such a feature. Pangolins are nocturnal, live in trees and live on a diet of ants and termites.

2. Turtle + hedgehog = armadillo

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Armadillos, with their leathery armor shells, live in underground burrows and are known to sleep up to 16 hours a day. They are native to South America, and only reached other parts of the Western Hemisphere in relatively modern times.

3. Bat + fox = fruit bat

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Unlike the common bat, this species does not use radar to get its bearings, but rather relies on its large eyes and nose – which explain their mammal-like faces. Their diet of fruit is theorized scientifically as an adaptation to regions and periods when insect populations were diminished.

4. Hoop snake + lizard = armadillo girdled lizard

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5. Duck + beaver = platypus

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The aquatic, egg-laying platypus has a duck-like and a beaver’s tail. It also has otter-like feet and a venomous touch. It is considered an important subject of study in the field of evolutionary biology and is symbol of pride in Australia, its native habitat.

6. Giraffe + zebra = okapi

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The okapi, an endangered species, is native to the Ituri Rainforest in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. It bears zebra-like striped markings but is actually related to the giraffe.

7. Prairie dog + armadillo = pichiciego

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The Argentinean creature, also known as the “Pink Fairy Armadillo” is adapted to desert life and is highly endangered. Its strange appearance includes silky yellowish white fur, a flexible shell and a spatula-shaped tail.

8. Deer + mouse = chevrotain

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The chevrotain  (French for “little goat”) or Mouse-Deer is the world’s smallest hoofed mammal. It is native to southern Asia.

9. Goat + elephant = saiga

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The highly-endangered saiga (a kind of antelope) population once spread from the Carpathian Mountains to China and North America but are now only found in Russia and Kazakhstan.  The saiga’s unique snout helps filter out dust kicked up by its herd in the summer. In the winter, it heats up the frigid air before it is taken to the lungs. Saigas have traditionally been an important food source for nomadic people in the regions of the Eurasian steppes and Mongolia.

10. Hamster with a pig = Honduran white bat

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This cuter cousin of the common bat has white fur and a yellow nose and ears.

11. Pig + squid = piglet squid

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This rarely-seen creature lives deep underwater and have no relation whatsoever to the pig.

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