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Stealth Facts

A yawning Bengal tiger shows the long dangerous canines used to take down prey.

A yawning Bengal tiger shows the long dangerous canines used to take down prey. (View larger version)

Photograph by National Geographic Television/John Cullum

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  • The Harpy Eagle isan eagle most at home in the forest. It does not fly high in the sky to search for prey like many other raptors.It sits and waits among the branches, until it spots or hears something to go after.

  • Harpies are named after the half woman/half bird monster from Greek mythology.

  • Harpy Eagles’ facial feathers create disc, which may focus sounds waves to enhance hearing, the way owls do.

  • The Bushmaster is the only other neo-tropical pit viper in all of the Americas to lays eggs instead of giving birth to live young in all of the Americas.

  • The locals have given the bushmaster the nickname "Matabuey", translating to ox-killer. It pertains to its highly potent venom.

  • Legends of Bushmasters claim they whistle from within the forest, and if the natives don’t retreat after hearing the whistle, they invite death upon themselves.

  • A bite from a bushmaster in the forest is almost certainly fatal as one will not make it to a hospital in time.

  • Glass frogs have specialized discs on the tips of their fingers and toes that allow them to adhere and move about the underside of leaves without problem.

  • The weasel's spine is so flexible that it can turn over and walk on its own rear end.”

  • The weasel can kill prey in seconds. In relation to size, weasels are equal to big African cats in predatory power.

  • Weasel teeth are self-sharpening and can slice like a guillotine.

  • Weasel hearing is excellent. Their ears are large but flat to the head so they do not get in the way when hunting in underground tunnels.

  • When the Zodarion spider delivers its venomous bite to its unsuspecting ant prey, it takes about three and a half minutes for the victim to become completely paralyzed.

  • The brown bears’ strong and slightly curved claws, averaging about three inches in length, actually evolved as a digging tool and not strictly a carnivorous weapon.

  • There were eight tiger subspecies at one time, but three became extinct during the 20th century.

  • Tigers are solitary and territorial cats, but use more than just urine to mark their territory. They are also known to stand on hind legs and cut deep parks on tree trunks with their claws or roll around on the ground to flatten grass and stir up dust as visual territory markers.

  • The Fan-throated Lizard runs so fast it is capable of running on only its two hind limbs with its tail raised in the air.

  • While normally brown and olive colored, the male Fan-throated Lizard’s gular pouch on its neck turns brilliant blues and reds during mating season, which it expands to attract a mate.

  • Chital deer have a good sense of smell, and langur monkeys have good eyesight, so they mutually help each other survive with their alarm calls when they sense a predator approaching.

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