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IN THIS ARTICLE
All about animals
- A lobster's blood isn't red like ours. It's light blue. (It has copper in it, not iron. Iron makes blood red.)
- Cats are amazing at twitching and turning their ears in all kinds of directions. Here's why: Cats have 32 muscles working each ear. Humans only have six.
- Lots of starfish have two tummies — one inside like yours and a second one they can push outside their mouth to trap big chunks of food. When they're done eating, starfish pull this second tummy back inside.
- What's inside a camel's hump? Most people think water, but they're wrong. It's fat. This gives camels energy if they run out of food.
- Sharks don't have any bones. They have softer, more bendable stuff called cartilage.
- The tentacles of the giant Arctic jellyfish can grow to 120 feet — that's as long as 100 small cars lined up bumper to bumper!
- There are more chickens in the world than any other kind of bird.
- Sharks' big fierce teeth aren't really teeth — they're scales, like the scales on the outside of most fish.
- Elephants have four knees. So do camels.
- Whoever named Koala bears got it wrong. They aren't bears at all. They're marsupials, just like a kangaroo.
- Armadillos can walk under water.
- There are more than 1,000 kinds of bats in the world.
- A horse has 18 more bones than a human — 278, compared with 260 in an adult human.
- Guinea pigs aren't pigs at all but rodents, like rats. Some people think they got their name because they squeal like pigs do.
- If you keep a pet goldfish in a darker room, its skin will get lighter. Open the curtains for a few days and it will go back to its regular color.
- Babies are born without kneecaps, that hard bone on your knees. Kneecaps grow as you get older. Can you feel yours?
- Every time you take a step you're using 54 muscles.
- You have about 100,000 hairs on your head.
- Your eyes blink about 4 million times a year.
- You have about 500 hairs in your eyebrow.
Bugs and more
- If you ever see a wasp flying crooked, it might be drunk. Wasps can get drunk from drinking strong flower nectar. They can even get so drunk that they fall down.
- Queen termites, the big mama rulers of the colony, can have 6,000 babies a day. That's right, in one day.
- Fleas can jump up to 150 times their height. This is like a human jumping 1,000 feet in the air — as high as 53 giraffes stacked up on top of each other.
- A snail can have about 25,000 teeth.
- Some kinds of cockroaches hide under water when they're scared. They're amphibious, which means they can breathe under water.
- Caterpillars have about 4,000 muscles. People have 629.
- Back in dinosaur times there was a teeny horse called an eohippus (e-oh-hip-us) that was the size of a small dog.
- A triceratops dinosaur gets its name because it has three horns on top of its head and "tri" means three.
- The largest flying insect ever was the prehistoric dragonfly, which lived in dinosaur times. With a wingspan of nearly 3 feet, it was about the same size as a tricycle.
- Cockroaches have lived on earth for around 300 million years — since dinosaur times.
Fun with food
- There are about 4,000 grains of sugar in a spoonful.
- Coconuts grow on palm trees and are filled with sweet white milk you can drink. If you shake a coconut you can hear the milk splash around.
- Asparagus contains a chemical called methanethiol, which smells like rotten eggs. After you eat it, your pee might smell funny for a while.
- What do almonds and peaches have in common? They're in the same plant family, related to each other like you and your cousins.
- One cow makes about 200,000 glasses of milk in her lifetime.
- Sugar comes from two kinds of plants — sugar beets, which grow underground like potatoes, and sugar cane, which is like thick, tall grass.
- You may know that raisins are dried-up grapes. But did you realize that prunes are dried-up plums?
- People can eat seaweed — it's good for you!
- The largest watermelon in the world was grown in the state of Tennessee and weighed 262 pounds — the size of a football player.
- What do roses and strawberries have in common? They're in the same plant family, related to each other like you and your cousins.
- Tofu is made from a bean that grows on a plant.
- Red bananas have reddish-purple skin and can taste like strawberries.
Here and there
- The Milky Way is an area in space crowded with tons of stars — so many that it looks like a road of spilled milk. That's how it got its name!
- If you could hop in a car and drive to the sun going 55 miles per hour, it would take you about 193 years to get there.
- Comets fly through space. When they get close to the sun they start to melt, causing a stream of drippy moisture and dust, which looks like a tail.
- There's a kind of star named White Dwarf, and another named Red Giant.
- The U.S. state that has the most earthquakes isn't California — it's Alaska.
- On a very clear night you may be able to see around 2,000 stars in the sky.
Catherine Rauch is a journalist who has written and produced several books and videos dealing with health issues.
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By Darienne Hosley Stewart
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