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There are millions upon millions of creatures, and animals, in the world. There are so many that it would take a lifetime to become an expert in just one or two of them. Take this quiz to test how much you know about the many animals with which we share the planet!

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Which of the following insect species is most likely to be observed participating in sexual cannibalism, the female consuming the male after reproduction?

Walking Stick

Praying Mantis

Bullet Ant

Dung Beetle

Praying Mantis
Mantises are an order (Mantodea) of insects that contains over 2,400 species in about 460 genera in 33 families. The largest family is the Mantidae (“mantids”). Females sometimes practice sexual cannibalism, eating their mates after copulation.

Which of the following is a defining characteristic of all invertebrates?

They have no backbone

They are herbivores

They are warm blooded

They are symmetrical

They have no backbone
Invertebrate are any animal that lacks a vertebral column, or backbone, in contrast to the cartilaginous or bony vertebrates. More than 90 percent of all living animal species are invertebrates.

Where do sea turtles lay their eggs?

On the sandy ocean floor

In kelp forests

On the beach

Between rocks on the ocean floor

On the beach
Sea turtles use beaches and the lower dunes to nest and lay their eggs. Sea turtles deposit an average of about 100 eggs in each nest and lay between 3 and 7 nests during the nesting season. Along a 20-mile stretch of beach on the east coast of Florida, sea turtles lay over 150,000 lbs of eggs in the sand.

Nearly all amphibians undergo a significant change from infancy to adulthood. What is the name of this change?





Metamorphosis in amphibians is the transformation of the larva to a miniature adult replicate, and usually from an aquatic to a terrestrial or semi-terrestrial lifestyle. Metamorphosis marks the beginning of the end of larval life.

The male of one type of fish is the only known creature where the male is the one to become pregnant. What fish is this?



Wolf eel


Which amphibians are known to have wart-like bumps covering their skin?





Toad warts are natural bumps on a toad’s back. Toads have larger lumps behind their eyes. The bumps and lumps are glands. The glands produce a whitish goo that is a foul-tasting and smelly poison.

Which of the following fish is caught by humans who stick their hands/arms into holes and pull the fish out after the fish bites their hand?

Rainbow trout

Largemouth Bass



Catfish are a diverse group of ray-finned fish. Despite their name, not all catfish have prominent barbels or “whiskers”. Members of the Siluriformes order are defined by features of the skull and swimbladder.

How are tree frogs able to climb trees?

Molecular bonds

Sticky mucus on their feet

Extreme gripping strength

Small claws

Sticky mucus on their feet
Not all tree frogs live in trees. Rather, the feature that unites them has to do with their feet—the last bone in their toes (called the terminal phalanx) is shaped like a claw. Tree frogs also have toe pads to help them climb and many have extra skeletal structures in their toes.

Which crustacean is known to make its home within the discarded shells of other animals?


Hermit crab

Spider crab

Softshell crab

Hermit crab
Hermit crabs are anomuran decapod crustaceans of the superfamily Paguroidea that have adapted to occupy empty scavenged mollusc shells to protect their fragile exoskeletons. There are over 800 species of hermit crab, most of which possess an asymmetric abdomen concealed by a snug-fitting shell. Hermit crabs’ non-calcified abdominal exoskeleton makes their exogenous shelter system obligatory.

Fish droppings

Fish scales

The rocks underneath

The algae they feed on

The algae they feed on
Because photosynthesis requires sunlight, most reef-building corals live in clear, shallow waters that are penetrated by sunlight. The algae also give a coral its color; coral polyps are actually transparent, so the color of the algae inside the polyps show through.

Where is snake venom stored?

Hollow jaw bone

Hollow fangs

Nasal passage

Venom glands

Venom glands
During vertebrate evolution, the snake venom gland has been adapted from the salivary gland. Secretory columnar cells in the gland epithelium secrete a complex mixture of peptides and proteins, stored in the lumen and channeled to the fangs through connecting ducts.

Which of the following is NOT a fish commonly known to live in and around coral reefs?


Yellow tang



A piranha or piraña a member of family Serrasalmidae, or a member of the subfamily Serrasalminae within the tetra family, Characidae in order Characiformes, is a freshwater fish that inhabits South American rivers, floodplains, lakes and reservoirs.

What invertebrate was (and still occasionally is) applied to the human body as part of medical treatment for disease?



Hook worms

Sea anemone

Leeches are segmented parasitic or predatory worms that comprise the subclass Hirudinea within the phylum Annelida. In modern times, leeches find medical use in treatment of joint diseases such as epicondylitis and osteoarthritis, extremity vein diseases, and in microsurgery, while hirudin is used as an anticoagulant drug to treat blood-clotting disorders.

Owls have special fringed feathers at the tips of their wings called flutings. What is the purpose of these feathers?

To allow the owl to fly silently

To pick up potential prey

To keep their young warm

To attract females

To allow the owl to fly silently
This effectively muffles the sound of the air rushing over the wing surface and allows the Owl to fly silently. There is also an alternative theory that the flutings actually shift the sound energy created by the wingbeats to a higher frequency spectrum, where most creatures (including prey and humans) cannot hear.

What is the name of the hard outer body all insects have?

Abdominal shell


Insect Armor


Instead of a backbone, insects have a hard exterior body covering, called an exoskeleton. Insects are arthropods: invertebrate animals that have an exoskeleton, a segmented body, and jointed appendages.

Which of the following features of a bird’s body structure is key to it being able to fly?

Having no liver or kidneys

Having hollow bones

Having no bones, only cartilage

Having zero body fat

Having hollow bones
Instead of heavy jaws and teeth, they have lightweight beaks. And instead of fur, they have feathers. These are light, streamlined and cleverly adjustable for flight control. Their bones are also hollow (pneumatised) making them lighter for flight.

All mammals have hair on their bodies at least one point during their lives. What is the primary function of the hair?


Protect against prey

Provide distinction between male and female

Increase sensitivity of touch

The most important function of hair in mammals is that of insulating against cold by conserving body heat. The differing colours and colour patterns in hair coats can also serve purposes of camouflage and of sexual recognition and attraction among the members of a species.

How do most amphibians reproduce?

By live birth

By self cloning

By laying eggs

By spreading spores

Many lizards have the ability to lose and regrow their tails. What is the most common reason they do this?

As part of shedding their skin during growth

To attract a mate

As food for their young

To distract a predator

To distract a predator
The main reason a lizard loses its tail is to defend itself. When a lizard detaches its tail, the tail whips around and wiggles on the ground. Nerves from the lizard’s body are still firing and communicating with each other. In fact, sometimes the tail will keep moving for upwards of a half hour.

Slugs, worms and many other invertebrates are hermaphrodites. What does it mean for an animal to be a hermaphrodite?

They have both male and female organs

They move without the use of any limbs

They mate year round

They mate every two years

Many fish are able to create light that they use in various ways. What is it that makes them able to generate light in most cases?

Infrared scales


Static electricity

Thermal radiation

Bioluminescence is the production and emission of light by living organisms. It is a form of chemiluminescence. Bioluminescence occurs widely in marine vertebrates and invertebrates, as well as in some fungi, microorganisms including some bioluminescent bacteria, and terrestrial arthropods such as fireflies.

Mammals are highly social and many predators are pack hunters. Which of the following IS NOT a pack hunter?

Polar bear




Polar bear
The polar bear is a hypercarnivorous bear whose native range lies largely within the Arctic Circle, encompassing the Arctic Ocean, its surrounding seas and surrounding land masses. It is the largest extant bear species, as well as the largest extant land carnivore.

Which of the following is NOT true about fleas?

Fleas are parasites

Fleas can jump a distance of 100 times their body length

Fleas transmit diseases

Fleas have wings

Fleas have wings
Fleas definitely do not have wings. They are not able to fly, although sometimes it may seem like they can, the way they multiply and can infest a structure in no time flat.

Reptiles have a much lower resting metabolism than most mammals. What is the benefit of a low resting metabolism?

The body requires less fuel (food)

They are able to more easily survive in cold climates

Eye sight is improved

The animal is able to go long periods of time without breathing

The body requires less fuel (food)
Birds and mammals have higher metabolic rates than fishes, amphibians and reptiles. This is partly because of higher body temperature of the homoeothermic group in which the oxygen consumption per unit weight increases inversely with the body weight.

What determines the body temperature of most fish?

What they eat

The amount and speed of their swimming

The temperature of the water

Thermoregulation (like humans)

The temperature of the water
Cold-blooded actually means the animal’s body temperature is basically the same as its surroundings. A fish swimming in 40° F water will have a body temperature very near 40° F. The same fish in 60° F water will have a body temperature near 60° F.

Which of the following is NOT a defense mechanism of the pufferfish?

Electric shock

Short burst of speed

Pointy spines


Electric shock
Tetraodontidae is a family of primarily marine and estuarine fish of the order Tetraodontiformes. The family includes many familiar species variously called pufferfish, puffers, balloonfish, blowfish, blowies, bubblefish, globefish, swellfish, toadfish, toadies, honey toads, sugar toads, and sea squab. They are morphologically similar to the closely related porcupinefish, which have large external spines (unlike the thinner, hidden spines of the Tetraodontidae, which are only visible when the fish have puffed up).

What fish, born with eyes on both sides of its head, has one eye migrate to the other side of the head, giving it both eyes on one side of its head?

Yellow tang


Yellow tang


Flounders are a group of flatfish species. They are demersal fish, found at the bottom of oceans around the world; some species will also enter estuaries. In many species, both eyes lie on one side of the head, one or the other migrating through or around the head during development.

All insects have bodies made of three parts. The top is the head, the bottom is the abdomen, what is the middle section called?





All adult insects have three body parts: head, thorax and abdomen. The wings and legs are always attached to the thorax. (Spiders, which are not insects, have two body parts: head and abdomen.)

What is the primary purpose of a frog croak?

They sing to their young as part of parenting

To scare away predators

To attract a mate

To attract insects that they then eat

To attract a mate
Male frogs croak during the mating season. Female frogs listen to the croaking and this allows them to find the males. The louder a male frog croaks the more likely he is to attract a partner.

All mammals have the same number of chambers in their hearts. How many chambers is that?





As mammals, we have four main parts to the heart, a left and a right atrium and a left and a right ventricle. This is called a four-chambered heart. Other mammals and birds all have four-chambered hearts.

Flamingos are known for their distinctive bright pink color. Why are they pink?

Their diet

Blood vessels run through their feathers

There are pink parasites that live on their feathers.

They roll around in pink foliage.

Their diet
Flamingos get their pink color from their food. Carotenoids give carrots their orange color or turn ripe tomatoes red. They are also found in the microscopic algae that brine shrimp eat. As a flamingo dines on algae and brine shrimp, its body metabolizes the pigments — turning its feathers pink.

Some vipers, pythons and boas have a special organ just under their nostrils that makes them better hunters. What is this organ used to detect?

Thermal radiation (heat)

Magnetic fields

Movement of the air

X-rays (to see through objects

Thermal radiation (heat)
Vipers, pythons and boas have holes on their faces called pit organs, which contain a membrane that can detect infrared radiation from warm bodies up to one metre away. At night, the pit organs allow snakes to ‘see’ an image of their predator or prey — as an infrared camera does — giving them a unique extra sense.

Which invertebrate is known to have a stomach that can exit the body while eating and then reenter the body when feeding is done?


Sea Urchin



Starfish or sea stars are star-shaped echinoderms belonging to the class Asteroidea. Common usage frequently finds these names being also applied to ophiuroids, which are correctly referred to as brittle stars or basket stars.

The deadliest creature in Africa is the mosquito due to the number of deaths resulting from malaria. What is the deadliest mammal in Africa?


Water buffalo



Despite being vegetarian, hippos are considered the most dangerous terrestrial animals in Africa. Male hippos will fiercely defend their territories, and females can become extremely aggressive if they sense anything getting between them and their young.

While there are not a lot of reptiles that migrate, there is one that migrated 12,774 miles over 647 days! What reptile is it that holds this record for the longest reptile migration?

Water Moccasin (snake)


Leatherback Turtle

Giant tortoise

Leatherback Turtle
The leatherback sea turtle, sometimes called the lute turtle or leathery turtle or simply the luth, is the largest of all living turtles and the heaviest non-crocodilian reptile, reaching lengths of up to 2 metres and weights of 600 kg. It is the only living species in the genus Dermochelys and family Dermochelyidae.

What is the most abundant insect in the world?





It hardly comes as a surprise that ants are the most numerous insect in the world. These colonial hymenopterans may number from 10-100,000 trillion individuals globally; there are more than 10,000 species.

What is the most consumed fish in the United States?





A tuna is a saltwater fish that belongs to the tribe Thunnini, a subgrouping of the Scombridae (mackerel) family. Found in warm seas, the tuna is commercially fished extensively as a food fish, and is popular as a bluewater game fish. As a result of overfishing, some tuna species, such as the southern bluefin tuna, are threatened with extinction.

Ants are amazing creatures that live in vast groups. How do all these adult ants communicate with one another?

Magnetic fields

Air vibrations

Magnetic fields

Clicking sounds

Air vibrations
All ants can produce pheromones, which are scent chemicals used for communication and to make trails. They can follow the smell of these trails to and from their nest. Ants also smell of the food they collect, so other ants can tell what they have found.

The red-tailed hawk is known for its amazing eye sight. Imagine that there is a human with 20/20 vision, meaning they can read reasonably small writing from 20 feet way. How far away could the red-tailed hawk read the same sign (assuming it could read)?

40 feet

80 feet

160 feet

20 feet

160 feet
The red-tailed hawk has vision that is 8 times better than that of humans, or what would be considered 20/2.5 vision. Meaning at 20 ft they can see what a normal human can see at 2.5 feet.

The males of one species of fish is a parasite of the females. They will bite onto a female slowly fussing their bodies, joining her blood stream and dissolving all of his internal organs except the testes. What deep sea fish is this?





The anglerfish are fish of the teleost order Lophiiformes. They are bony fish named for their characteristic mode of predation, in which a modified luminescent fin ray (the esca or illicium) acts as a lure for other fish. The luminescence comes from symbiotic bacteria, which are thought to be acquired from seawater, that dwell in and around the sea.


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