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Smelliest Facts

High in the forests of the Amazon is an animal thats more famous for its speed than its stench.  The sloth is the slowest mammal on the planet and it has some of the worlds worst personal hygiene.  A sloth pays so little attention to its grooming that green algae grows on its coarse hair.  A single animal can be home to 980 sloth beetles and more than 120 moths.  Three different species of mites live happily inside a sloths rectum.  This is a dirty beast  and it smells.

High in the forests of the Amazon is an animal that’s more famous for its speed than its stench.  The sloth is the slowest mammal on the planet and it has some of the world’s worst personal hygiene.  A sloth pays so little attention to its grooming that green algae grows on its coarse hair.  A single animal can be home to 980 sloth beetles and more than 120 moths.  Three different species of mites live happily inside a sloth’s rectum.  This is a dirty beast – and it smells. (View larger version)

Photograph by Getty Images

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  • Sperm whales dive as deep as 3,280 feet as they search for squid to eat, and can hold their breath for up to 90 minutes on such dives.

  • The sloth is the world's slowest mammal. It moves so little that greenish algae grows on its furry coat, which helps the sloth camouflage in the trees of its Central and South American rainforest home.

  • Sloths sleep around 15 to 20 hours each day.

  • Three-toed sloths have extra neck vertebrae. This extra vertebrae allows them to turn their heads some 270 degrees.

  • Ring-tailed lemurs live in troops that may include 6 to 30 animals. On average, these groups contain about 17 members. Both males and females are present, and a dominant female presides over the troop.

  • There are three hyena species: spotted, brown, and striped. Spotted hyenas are the largest of the three.

  • Hyenas look similar to dogs, but they are actually more closely related to cats.

  • Studies find that fulmars “chuckle and grunt” when feeding. They make various guttural calls during breeding season.

  • Lions are the only cats that live in groups. These groups are called prides and can contain multiple males, females and cubs.

  • Just one millipede generates enough hydrogen cyanide to kill a mouse—six times over.

  • Elephants form a strict hierarchy. This hierarchy reduces conflicts over scarce resources like water, food and mates.

  • Turkey vultures—also called buzzards—are the most widespread vulture in North America.

  • When a turkey vulture is threatened, it defends itself by vomiting up powerful stomach acids.

  • Skunks can have striped, spotted, and swirled patterns on their black-and-white fur.

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