Our planet is filled with amazing creatures, some are beautiful, some are scary and some are just plain weird. The animals on this list are out of the ordinary and very weird; enjoy discovering more about the weird animals from around the world.
01. Giraffe Weevil
This beetle makes Madagascar its home. In fact, it actually lives in only one type of tree in Madagascar; the giraffe weevil is picky bug about where it calls home. The male of the species has a long, jointed neck, often as least as long as their bodies. The elongated neck is used during mating season because the males wrestle with each other to impress the lady weevils and these exotic animals use their long necks as leverage.
02. Glass Frog
These endangered frogs live in Central and South America in the tropical rainforests. The glass frog received its name because it is translucent, allowing you to see its organs through the skin. How often can you view the wonder that it life, in a creating still alive, without the need to dissect it? Sadly, because their homes are being developed, these weird rainforest animals will soon be extinct.
03. Longhorn cowfish
Longhorn cowfish are part of the boxfish family and get their name from their long horns on top of their heads, which resemble a longhorn cow. These strange animals have a comical look, with very prominent lips that can appear as if they are puckering up for a big kiss.
A relative of the gazelle, but looking like a giraffe-necked antelope, is the African gerenuk that roams the dry scrub and desert looking for food in the undergrowth of the bush. This funny looking animal has the advantages of using its long legs to gallop at high speeds, but this deer like animal is so slender, that at times it has broken its long legs just from stumbling or tripping on the ground.
05. Red-Lipped Batfish
This unhappy looking fish looks like it has a permanent frown, painted with red lipstick so it always looks disapproving. What could make a fish look so unhappy? Maybe it is because it is a fish with poor swimming skills so instead of swimming, it uses its fins to walk along the bottom of the ocean.
06. Bearded Pig
Step right up to see the “Bearded Pig Lady”. Both the boys and the girls of this pig species have bushy hair along their nose and cheeks forming a wiry beard. Both sexes also possess long sharp tusks that can grow up to 10” (25 cm) in length and have powerful jaws that can crack open a coconut in one bite!
07. Hairy Frogfish
The Hairy Frogfish may have quite a name, but it’s nothing compared to the way they look! This furry-looking fish is the ultimate quick change artist, capable of looking like prey to catch food, predators to protect themselves or simply blending in with the background. These strange animals are called “hairy” frogfish because of the hundreds of tiny filaments that float around their bodies. When some curious creature comes closer, thinking the floating filaments might be food, the hairy frogfish attacks!
08. Indian Purple Frog
There is nothing cute about this frog. These frogs, found in India, live underground for their entire lives, except for mating season, when they will surface for two weeks to mate. These weird animals have a greyish-purple body that is bloated and a pointy face.
The okapi looks like it is part zebra and part antelope but is it actually related to giraffes. Living in the Congo, these unusual animals have a small head with a short snout, large ears, a long, thick neck and a compact body with powerful looking legs. Their bodies are dark brown, their heads are a lighter brown, fading to white around the cheeks and chin and their legs are striped like a zebra.
10. Thorny Dragon
These Australian lizards are also known as Moloch’s. These strange desert animals have brown skin but what makes them odd is the cone shaped spines that grow all over their body. The thorny dragon has a fake head, made of these spines on the back of its neck and when threatened, the thorny dragon will present its false head instead. The cones on his body are actually useful because they form ridges along their bodies and water will collect in the ridges and be carried to the mouth. This is an adaption for living in the dry Australian deserts.
11. The Panda Ant
Despite its name, this is not an ant at all, but rather a species of wasp. The females are wingless and look like large, hairy ants. They have a black and white body, and a white head that is covered in fur. However, they are not as cute as their namesake is because they have very painful stings. These strange animals live in Chile, so if you are there, better avoid these!
12. Hummingbird Hawk Moth
It’s a hummingbird; no, it’s a moth…wait, what is it? It is a moth, but it mimics the body shape of a hummingbird almost perfectly, it even makes the same humming sound with its wings as a hummingbird does. It feeds off the nectar of flowers and needs to rapidly flap its wings to stay in place, just as a hummingbird does. The hummingbird hawk moth is a master of mimicry.
13. Glaucus Atlanticus – Blue Dragon
Blue dragons are a type of blue sea slug and they are very small. They have vibrantly blue bodies of various shades of blue and their fins and appendages have a wing-like appearance to them. They are found in the oceans where the water is warm and will inflate a sac in their stomach with gas to be able to float on the surface of the water. These strange animals are considered to be one of the most beautiful ocean creatures.
14. Leafy Seadragon
Resembling a piece of drifting seaweed, the leafy seadragon is also known as an Australian seahorse. These weird animals live in cold water that is calm and look like seahorses, with pieces of kelp stuck their bodies. They have the basic shape of a seahorse but they have appendages all over their bodies that make them look very much like a piece of kelp, natural camouflage at its best.
15. Emperor Tamarin
Mustaches are distinguished and that makes these small monkeys very distinguished indeed. These rain forest dwellers are known for having long, white mustaches that grow to be around 25 cm long, wider than their shoulders. Because their fur is a dark grey, their mustaches really stand out giving them a comical, but distinguished look. These unusual animals received their name as a joke, their mustache reminded their discoverers of Wilhelm II, the emperor of German but the name stuck.
16. Star Nosed Mole
Looking more like something out of a science fiction movie than your garden, the star nosed mole is found in the Northern United States and Eastern Canada. Living underground, the mole has 22 fleshy tentacles at the end of its snout that it uses to identify its food by touch. The star nosed mole feeds on worms, mollusks, insects and invertebrates.
With its cute smile and frilly gills, the axolotl is a Mexican salamander that remains fully aquatic and the gills remain, even as adults. The axolotl is not on this list for being cute however; they are on the list because when they can regenerate their limbs. Lose a leg just grow a new one! These weird ocean animals are often kept and sold as exotic pets; face it, who would not want a pet that seems like it is always smiling?
This tiny primate is found only in Madagascar and looks like a cross between a rat and a bat. Featuring large bat ears, a nearly hairless body except for the long straggles of hair here and there, and with long, bony fingers and toes the aye-aye is a very odd looking animal indeed. It is nocturnal and will tap on trees to find grubs, when it finds a grub, the aye-aye will gnaw a hole in the bark and then use its long fingers to fish out the grub.
The tarsier looks like he has had too much coffee. These small primates have giant eyes in their small faces because they are nocturnal. They mostly eat insects, which they catch by jumping and catching the insects. These weird creatures will also catch small birds the same way.
20. Dumbo Octopus
These rare octopi dwell deep under the surface of the ocean, as far down as 5000 m. At only 20 cm, they are tiny and are not shaped like a regular octopus. These weird animals have the round body but instead of long tentacles, they have short stubby tentacles that ring their body and two fins that project up from their body, which resemble large ears, hence the name.
21. Frilled Lizard
The frilled lizard is one of our modern day dinosaurs and anybody who has seen Jurassic Park can easily envision this lizard. They have a ruff of skin that they keep folded back against their neck and head until something scares them. The frill, which is stabilized by long spines, will flare out, making the lizard look big and menacing; the lizard will also open its mouth wide at the same time. If this display of size and ferocity fails to scare off their attacker, the lizard will run to a tree and climb to safety.
These arctic whales feature a long tooth or horn on their foreheads. They have been heavily hunted for the ivory horns. These weird animals are a pale color, which is where their name comes from, the Danish word narwhal, is related to the Norse word nar, which means corpse. Their tusk or horn can grow up to be 9 feet in length and the narwhal is only one of two white whale species with the beluga whale being the other.
23. Blob fish
The aptly named blob fish is a deep-water fish found mostly off the coasts of Tasmania and Australia. Because of the extreme pressure of the water at the depth where these fish live, the fish is mostly a gelatinous mass of flesh, whose density is just slightly less than water, instead of swimming, the blob fish floats above the sea floor and will simply suck in and swallow edible bits of food that floats by.
Although known by many, the platypus is still a very unique animal and a weird one, landing it on this list. The platypus is an echidna and it lives in Tasmania and eastern Australia. Although it is a mammal, it lays eggs. The platypus has a duck-like bill and is also venomous. A spur on their hind feet will deliver poison, which while not fatal, is very painful to humans. This is a very unique animal in every way.
Related to the stork, the shoebill has a large, thick bill that looks like, well a shoe. At roughly 4 ft tall and with a wingspan of just over 7.5 ft across, the shoebill is an impressive bird to see. It lives in east Africa. The ancient Arabs even referred to the shape of the bill as being shoe-like by giving the bird a name that means “one with a shoe.”
26. Yeti Crab
Living in the South Pacific Ocean, this crab has its own fur coat. The crab’s long front legs as well as its shorter walking lets are covered with long white or blonde setae, which make the crab look like it has furry legs. The crabs are blind and live in the deep waters that surround hydrothermal vents. Their “fur” contains bacteria, which are thought to help filter out the poisonous minerals from the vents, and the crabs might feed on the bacteria as well as the small shrimp that live around the vents and green algae.
27. Goblin Shark
This rare shark is the last of its kind and it is right out of your nightmares. The goblin shark has a snout full of long, needle like teeth and a large projection that extends from its forehead. Thankfully for us, because these strange creatures live 100 meters or deeper, they are very rarely encountered; something that divers are probably very glad of!
28. Venezuelan Poodle Moth
These moths are so named because of the thick fur that covers their legs, body and their wings. These strange animals have two antennae that look like long palm fronds extending over each eye. This is a new species of moth; it was discovered until 2009 looks both cute and terrifying at the same time.
29. Spider Crab
Even though this is not a spider, the spider like appearance of this giant crab will make any arachnophobia sufferer run screaming from the room. With a leg span that can reach twelve feet, this is a massive crab; factor in that they can weigh up to fifty pounds and you get a terrifying new nightmare to haunt your dreams. These weird looking animals live in the waters of Japan and are often found on menus there.
30. Giant Isopod
The giant isopod looks a little too much like the face hugger from Aliens for comfort. Isopods typically do not get this large but because these live in deep water, these weird animals grow to massive proportions, turning a cute little crustacean into a giant, jointed thing of your nightmares.
31. Saiga Antelope
If you put a short elephant trunk on the face of an antelope, you would have the Saiga antelope. These antelopes are native to the steppes of Eurasia and have a long, flexible, nose that hangs down.
32. Bush Viper
Not all of the snakes in Africa live on the ground and these tropical snakes live in the trees. Their scales look like overlapping leaves and they are brightly colored. Their tail is very strong and is used to support the snake while it is hanging from a branch or limb.
33. Blue Parrotfish
The parrotfish is a bright blue fish, relatively large that is found in the Atlantic Ocean. These are popular fish for divers to photograph because of their vibrant blue color and large size. They have bony ridges of teeth and often have their mouths open when swimming, looking for food, which makes these weird animals seem like they are smiling.
There are twenty species of Armadillo, a name that means “little armored thing” in Spanish. Armadillos are mammals that are found all over Central and South America but only one species, the nine- banded Armadillo, lives in the United States. Armadillos are thought of as pests but their ability to consume fire ants is really very useful to people.
35. Proboscis Monkey
This playful primate is nature’s natural comedian, with an enormous nose and wacky way of communicating! In fact, proboscis is just another word for nose, meaning this “nose monkey” is named for its funniest feature. The males have even larger noses than the females, which can grow to be longer than 10 cm, or roughly 4 inches. That’s quite a nose!
36. Angora Rabbit
These Turkish rabbits are known for their soft, long hair, which is turned into wool. When you see an Angora rabbit, you mostly see a giant cotton ball with a face. The fur is strikingly long, making the rabbit seem like it is round because the basic shape of the rabbit is hidden under the enormous lengths of hair. These weird animals are actually bred for their hair.
37. Western Long-beaked Echidna
The western long-beaked echidna looks like a cross between a hedgehog and an anteater, but he’s actually a monotreme. This little guy is one of two mammals that lay eggs and feed their babies milk, called monotremes, with the other being the platypus. The long-beaked echidna is nocturnal, using the safety- of night to forage for earthworms on the forest floor.
This animal has earned the nickname pig deer and one look at its canine teeth, pig shape and deer-like legs you can see why. This species is a rare member of the pig family and only found on four of the islands that make up Indonesia. What is so unusual about this wild pig is that it must grind its tusk through regular activity; otherwise, the tusks will grow so large they can dangerously push into the skull.
The hagfish is truly one of the most disgusting creatures that you will find on this list, both for their feeding habits and for their ability to slime. The hagfish has a long eel-like body and when caught, they will excrete copious amounts of thick, fibrous slime that sticks and is hard to remove. This helps them escape predators.
Their eating habits are even more distasteful; they will latch onto a passing fish, and then eat their way inside, where they will then begin to devour their unwilling host from the inside out. Fishermen hate catching them in their nets because their slime will make an entire haul of fish unusable, cleaning the slime off the fish is simply not practical.
The gharial is one of the oddest known crocodiles, with a bulb on the end of its long, toothy snout. Where did this blob on its nose come from, and what is it for? No one really knows. What we do know is that it only appears on mature male gharials, and it gets bigger and bigger as the animal ages. The gharial gets its name from the Hindi word ghara, which means “pot” – much like the big bulb on its snout.
41. Flying Fish
Flying fish are so much fun to watch, one time while sailing in the Caribbean several of these fish flew right on to the deck of our catamaran. Flying fish do not actually fly, but glide through the air. This is their way of escaping from predators and this is how these weird animals do it.
42. Sea Pig
Sea pigs live on the bottom of the ocean and are part of the sea cucumber family. Like nature’s very own vacuum cleaner, they eat the sediments of the deep-sea mud which is loaded with rich organic particles. This rich organic food has sifted down from the surface of the ocean and come to rest on the bottom of the sea, creating food for the sea pigs, such as, dead plants and fish.
The world is full of many weird things, some of them are beautiful, some disgusting and some are deadly but they are all weirdly fascinating and that is why they have made it onto this list.