Everyone had heard of the Big Five, so it was only a matter of time before the Little Five came out and took center stage. While the term “Big Five” was given to the most peril African animals in the colonial era, the Little Five are five African small animals that partially share their name with the Big Five (lion, elephant, rhinoceros, buffalo, leopard). 5 small ones were named after 5 large animals because of common behavior or body similarity.
Elephant shrews got their name because of their flexible muzzle, resembling the trunk of an elephant. There are 19 species of elephant mice in Africa, but these photos and videos below show the Bushveld elephant mouse, as it is the only elephant mouse that we have been able to document.
Elephant mice are not elephants or shrews, but they are closely related to manatees, anteaters and elephants. It’s pretty crazy when you realize that an elephant shrew can fit in the palm of your hand.
They are easily recognized by their long, flexible muzzle, which is used to search for prey, including insects, spiders and worms. Elephant shrews are monogamous, but they are rarely seen in pairs, as they are mostly solitary. They only meet for a short time during the mating season, so we are incredibly lucky to see the two together!
The leopard turtle is the fourth largest turtle in the world. You can meet leopard turtles in almost all habitats in eastern and southern Africa, but the best time to look for them is right after the rain, when they become active. During dry periods, turtles are active in a sheltered place, waiting for the return of rain.
Its domed carapace, or shell, is yellow with dark spots (like a leopard), becomes darker and more mottled with age. Males Are smaller than females (See photo below). In addition, women’s sideburns are more rounded and curved.
During this walk, he showed us the little things that make this desert a wonderful wild world, including this ant lion. Ants are insects from the order Neuroptera. Its name refers to the predatory behavior of its larva; wild as a lion! They dig holes in the ground where they catch ants and other small insects.
How do ants set their traps?
Ant traps are easy to spot. If you see a funnel-shaped pit (1 to 2 inches deep) with a small hole at the bottom, you’re probably looking at an ant trap.
The ant larvae dig a hole with their belly like a plow, and then use their head like a shovel to remove all loose particles. When the pit ends, the anteater is buried so that only its jaws protrude from a small hole at the bottom of the pit.
When a small insect crosses the well and comes to the edge of the well, it sinks to the bottom. the antelope will take the opportunity to grab prey with its jaws, like a lion in ambush. food is consumed by sucking out the contents of the prey and pushing its empty shell out of the pit.
The larvae of ants form a cocoon of sand and silk, where they turn into a mature ant, a bit like a dragonfly. Mature ants don’t eat, so the larva needs to eat enough to enter maturehood.
Rhinoceros beetles are actually found on all continents except Antarctica. They are even found in the southeastern United States. Rhinoceros beetles are easily recognized by their horn-shaped protrusions on the heads of males. They are used for digging in the litter, and are also used to keep other male rhinoceros beetles away from females. These herbivorous insects are extremely strong, and some species can lift 850 times their weight.
The red-billed weaver bison (pictured below) is easily distinguished by its strong red beak and white spots on the wings. Its favorite habitat is fields of dry thorns and deciduous forests. He is a common resident of Botswana, northeastern South Africa, eastern Namibia and the western regions of Zimbabwe and Mozambique.
Their nests are easy to recognize, as they breed together in large random clusters of sticks on trees or power poles. If you’ve been to South Africa, you’ve probably seen their nests! We saw this family of buffalo weavers during our last trip to Namibia at the visitor center in Etosha National Park. They were very loud when they worked in their nest.