Sunday Mammalfest, Episode 3

Typically when one thinks of Cthulhu, or some other mysterious horror beyond human understanding, one has images of octopuses, fish, eels and snakes – various cold-blood creatures. But mammals can be creepy as hell too. So this week’s mammalfest is an exhibition of those mammals which may be in league with the elder gods in their plan to bring pre-human madness and devastation to the world.

Star-nosed mole, Condylura cristata

Star-nosed mole, Condylura cristata

Our first example is the star-nosed mole, the fastest eater in the world. By using the incredibly sensitive tentacles on its snout, it can decide by touch whether or not to eat something in a mere 8 miliseconds, and then bringing that object into the mouth to swallow in only 120 miliseconds. Be glad that object is not you or those you love.

A similar adaptation is found in the fringe-lipped bat, which uses its complex array of bumps and protrusions to identify from a frog’s skin whether it will be poisonous. Against this menace from beyond sanity, not even turning into a frog will save you.

Fringe-lipped bat, Trachops cirrhosus

Fringe-lipped bat, Trachops cirrhosus

Completing the mind-melting trinity is the naked mole rat, a mouse with the soul of an ant. They live underground in their vast colonies, all unswervingly loyal to their mighty queen. What are they doing down there? What are they planning? Why do they look like penises with legs? We know only three things: they feed their young on feces, they cannot feel pain in their skin, and when they emerge from their underground fortresses in the deserts of Somalia, humanity will be in mortal danger.

Naked mole rat, Heterocephalus glaber

Naked mole rat, Heterocephalus glaber

3 Responses to “Sunday Mammalfest, Episode 3”

  1. Rumblegumption Says:

    That reminded me, you must listen to this you mammal-loving-marxist(ish) you…

    [audio src="http://themightyowl.com/marxism2005/marxism-and-monsters-china-mieville.mp3" /]

  2. DOMINO Says:

    Those naked mole rats are kooky!

  3. Lindsay Says:

    Bleah!

    Usually I find your Sunday Mammalfest critters adorable (yes, even the pangolin you just posted. I have a *VERY* flexible definition of cute), but these guys are seriously creepy.


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