Categories
Amphibians Birds Invertebrates Mammals Me

What Animals Can Sing Besides Birds?

A shoebill I encountered in Uganda

What Animals Can Sing Besides Birds?

Although some birds don’t sing, such as vultures, storks, cedar waxwing, and the females of many species, birds are the best singers in the animal kingdom.

Other than birds, many animals can sing. Mammals that can sing include whales, mice, Mexican free-tailed bats, and antelope squirrels. Cold-blooded animals that can sing include cicadas, crickets, katydids, tree frogs, and toadfish.

Hoomans are animals, too!

Hold on, now birds might not be the best singers in the animal kingdom. We often forget the fact that the human being is one of the four great apes of the family Hominidae together with the orangutans, chimpanzees, and my favorite gorillas. Yay, we humans are animals. And, we sing!

What would I do if I didn’t choose to become a zoologist?

Probably music. That’s been my answer every time I was asked this. But I never had the time earlier in my life to do music until recently.

Here is the first song that I made with a few of my friends all by ourselves — Dead roses by ollie! It is a piano cover of a song originally with guitar and the entire arrangement is new.

The second song is about death and depression — Till death frees me by zevia

Starting with covers but we are working on our own original songs where I’ll try to express my thoughts about life, animals, and nature in them!

Categories
Africa Invertebrates

How To Tell A Millipede From A Centipede

Having 512 Legs Crawling On Me Is More Satisfying Than ASMR

Every time when I say I want to show you some creepy crawlies people are expecting spiders and snakes but no one will expect these.

I think these are creepier than spiders.

Shongololo, The Giant African Millipede

these are the African giant millipedes.

when I was in south Africa local people called them an interesting name shongololo they told me it means a train it’s a luxury way to travel millipedes are generally smaller way smaller than this this is the world’s largest species of millipede

How many legs do they have?

they’re named milli-pede but actually, they don’t have as many legs as the name suggests

so different species have different numbers of legs the African giant millipedes usually have 256 legs

so they have 64 segments on each segment there are two pairs of legs

this is the head you can see two antennae

it feels satisfying when they’re crawling on your hand so many legs tickling you at the same time amazing creatures so they live in the forests rainforests and dry forests

I have seen them in a lot of different places in Africa

they can be living on the ground many people think they are burrowers but actually, i have seen them climbing trees they can climb very well

if you’re new to these animals you may be confused

How to tell the difference between a centipede and a millipede?

they can look very similar to most people especially when you see one in the wild when they’re moving quickly when they move quickly that’s usually a centipede because millipedes are slow they are not fast at all usually millipedes are smaller but because these are the largest millipedes so they get this big they’re usually a lot smaller they’re usually just like this

and if you can take a close look it’s easier to identify you can look at the legs so these are millipedes they have their legs underneath the body centipedes have their legs on the side

and you don’t want to handle a centipede bare hand because centipedes are venomous millipedes are harmless

They’re actually very good for the ecosystem

they are herbivores they eat plants

the feces is very good for the plants that are a fertilizer and also they clean up the floor of the rainforest by eating all the fallen rotten fruits

just like a janitor so the ecosystem needs these animals to clean up the environment wow amazing look how they move they don’t move all the legs at the same time

and the legs movement looks like waves

Symbiosis

I’m not sure if I can show the camera it’s too small if you look closely you can see tiny little bugs on their body so that is actually very common those are mites but don’t be scared those mites are not the mites that live in a mammal’s body those are different kinds of mites they live on the body of a millipede and they’re actually good for each other so the mites will eat the leftover food from the millipede’s body so they can get food and they clean up the millipede’s body

so they are in a symbiotic relationship they’re helping each other live peacefully together

It is a perfect example of misunderstood animals

most people when they look at them they think oh gross scary creepy but actually, they are peaceful harmless clean animals that actually help the ecosystem

the world is full of misunderstanding

I hope you have learned something help spread the word and let more people understand the good side of these animals we do need them in our world I’ll let them go

it’s also very satisfying looking at them just walking.

Teachers React To My Creepy Crawlers

Helping people overcome the fear of the animals they had never touched is a part of what I do when I’m off the field.

Millipedes are harmless, but often get killed by people. Why? That’s because they are mistaken for centipedes which are venomous.

“Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.” ― Martin Luther King Jr.

Education is not just a talk or slide show presentation. Hands-on experience is what really inspires people to have new thoughts.

Categories
Asia Invertebrates

Is The Fire Snail Extinct In The Wild?

Snails are everywhere. The brown ones in Hong Kong are the invasive African snails (Lissachatina fulica).

The Snail’s body is soft, unprotected, and vulnerable. But it maneuvers its way across thorns and thistles without harm. Meanwhile, many humans look powerful, fully armored, and invincible, yet become a crybaby when a little bug comes close.

But this black and orange one is in a different league. Not a snail you might have seen.

Meet the Fire Snail (Platymma tweediei). This is the real-life Magcargo, a fire/rock-type Pokémon.

It is a very rare species native to only a narrow range in Malaysia such as the Cameron Highlands. It is very nearly, if not already extinct in the wild, sadly, because of deforestation and pollution.

Ironically, it is not a listed endangered species. Probably IUCN and CITES don’t even have enough research for this species.

Luckily we still have some in captivity to safeguard this species against complete extinction. Seems like they already can’t survive in their natural habitats. Sad. We need to do something.

That’s exactly why I want to show you all these rare creatures. Unlike you, many people never even have a chance to learn their existence before they are completely gone. Let’s help save all these creatures. Protect our environment. Share this if you care.

火焰蝸牛 | 馬來西亞金馬崙高原稀有生物 | 野外絕種又並非瀕危物種? | 粵語版

Categories
Africa Americas Asia Australia Europe HK Invertebrates Species Profiles

Scarab Beetle – Hong Kong Wildlife | 金龜子 – 香港野生動物

Because of its glamorous metallic colors, these were the popular bugs Hong Kong kids used to spend their springs and summers finding them in the bush back in the 1970’s to 80’s.

There are over 30,000 species of scarabs in the world.

In Hong Kong, the more common scarabs include The green chafer beetles (Anomala cupripes and Anomala corpulenta)

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Coleoptera
Superfamily: Scarabaeoidea
Family: Scarabaeidae (Latreille, 1802)

See more of my encounters with Hong Kong Wildlife.

金龜子, 金龜

Categories
Asia HK Invertebrates Species Profiles

Amphibious Litter Cockroach – Hong Kong Wildlife | 東方水蠊 – 香港野生動物

Opisthoplatia orientalis (Burmeister, 1838)
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Blattodea
Family: Blaberidae
Genus: Opisthoplatia
Species: orientalis

See more of my encounters with Hong Kong Wildlife.

東方水蠊, 金邊土鱉, 東洋斑蜚蠊, 東洋斑蠊, 短翅蟑螂, Amphibious Litter Roach

Categories
Asia HK Invertebrates Species Profiles

Pinkwinged Grasshopper – Hong Kong Wildlife | 短額負蝗 – 香港野生動物

Atractomorpha sinensis (Bolívar, 1905)
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Orthoptera
Suborder: Caelifera
Family: Pyrgomorphidae
Subfamily: Pyrgomorphinae
Genus: Atractomorpha
Species: sinensis

See more of my encounters with Hong Kong Wildlife.

短額負蝗, 紅後負蝗, 紅后負蝗

Categories
Asia HK Invertebrates Species Profiles

Lychee Stink Bug – Hong Kong Wildlife | 荔枝椿象 – 香港野生動物

Lychee giant stink bug (Tessaratoma papillosa) is beautiful bug growing to 24 mm. Nymphs are especially colorful. But it is considered a pest by farmers as it feeds on lychee and longan trees by sucking the saps from its flowers, young fruits, and twigs.

They are called stink bugs because when threatened their defense mechanism is a foul-smelling, long-lasting excretion. Local people believe it is poisonous and can cause blindness when rubbing eyes after touching it.

Fun fact: Females always lay 14 eggs. Not 13 or 15.

Tessaratoma papillosa (Drury, 1770)
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hemiptera
Family: Tessaratomidae
Genus: Tessaratoma
Species: papillosa

See more of my encounters with Hong Kong Wildlife.

荔枝椿象, 荔蝽, 臭屁蟲, 十四粒

Categories
Africa Americas Asia Europe HK Invertebrates Species Profiles

Harvestman – Hong Kong Wildlife | 盲蛛 – 香港野生動物

Before you want to learn about Harvestmen (also called Daddy longlegs or Harvesters), let me explain a little about invertebrate classification – Fun fact: They are not spiders.

Because of having 8 legs, these bugs are not insects. However, it does not necessarily make them spiders. There are many other bugs with 8 legs.

They are all arachnids (class Arachnida), such as ticks, mites, spiders (order Araneae), scorpions (order Scorpiones), vinegaroons (order Thelyphonida), and together with the Harvestman (order Opiliones). There are over 10,000 described species of harvestmen in the world.

In my photo it is a Leiobunum sp of the harvestman family Sclerosomatidae with over 100 described species.

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Chelicerata
Class: Arachnida
Order: Opiliones
Family: Sclerosomatidae
Genus: Leiobunum

See more of my encounters with Hong Kong Wildlife.

盲蛛目, 長腳盲蛛, 長腿叔叔蜘蛛, 盲蜘蛛

Categories
Asia HK Invertebrates Species Profiles

White Moth Bug – Hong Kong Wildlife | 白蛾蠟蟲 – 香港野生動物

This is a Flatid planthopper (Lawana imitata), or commonly known as White moth bugs, I found in Sha Tau Kok, northern Fanling, New Territories. It can also be found in China and Vietnam.

They live in trees. Adults are active from May to October. I think they look so elegant and beautiful, but farmers just hate them because they drink plant juices from stems to leaves to fruits. This species is considered a pest of citrus, tea, mango, guava, grape, lychee, and cashew.

Lawana imitata (Melichar, 1902)
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hemiptera
Infraorder: Fulgoromorpha
Superfamily: Fulgoroidea
Family: Flatidae
Genus: Lawana
Species: imitata

See more of my encounters with Hong Kong Wildlife.

白蛾蠟蟲, 紫絡蛾蠟蟬, Flatid planthopper (Lawana imitata)。

我曾經在新界粉嶺北區看過牠們, 你也可以在中國和越南發現牠們的蹤跡。

牠們住在樹上, 成蟲(成年的昆蟲)活躍於5月至10月, 我覺得牠們外型優雅美麗, 但農夫很討厭牠們, 因為牠們會吸食農作物莖部的汁液, 以至葉子及果實。牠們被認定為某些植物的農業害蟲 ,包括橙, 茶, 芒果, 石榴, 葡萄, 荔枝以及腰果。