Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Devils in Danger

According to this article, around half of the Tasmanian devils have died from a grotesque and apparently transmittable facial tumor. It would be a tragedy to lose such an odd animal. Here are some interesting facts about the devils from the story:
  • They were originally named "devils" because the settlers who heard their screaming thought it could only come from Old Scratch himself.
  • They are the size of a spaniel, but have the bite strength of a dog four times their size and can eat a quarter of their body weight in one feeding.
  • When they get excited, their ears turn red.
  • Finally, and oddly, according to the reporter, Sandra Blakeslee, they have "disappointing" back ends. I have no idea what Ms. Blakeslee was hoping for regarding devils' rear ends that left her disappointed.


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