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Traditional Chinese

中国 - 动物 China - Animals

Welcome to Window on the World. Each week we discover so many interesting things about countries around the world. This is our final week to learn about China. Today we will focus on the animals that make their homes in Mainland China.

You can find such a large variety of animals there. I was surprised to find many different kinds of birds. Did you know that there are two different types of owls that live in China? They are the Long?eared Owl and the Snowy Owl. The Long Eared Owl has large ears that provide it with excellent hearing. It also has fantastic eyesight. It can spot a mouse 600 meters away. The Snowy Owl is totally white. It can completely camouflage or hide itself in the snowy landscape of northern China. It has feathers that covers its legs and powerful claws.

Several other interesting birds are the Golden Oriole, the Hoopoe, and the Bearded Vulture. The Golden Oriole is colored with gold and black feathers. The Hoopoe has a large fan-shaped crest on its head and a black and white striped tail. It often has a very foul-smelling nest! The Bearded Vulture is magnificent in flight. It has a 3-meter wingspan and can reach speeds of 130 kilometers per hour. Another flying creature is the Long?eared Bat. It is small and usually seen at night. It eats small insects while flying but often saves larger insects to eat later. The Long-eared Bat has a bag of skin stretched between its legs, that is used to store the bigger insects for eating later.

Besides birds, you will also find a variety of mammals. Do you remember that mammals are animals that have hair or fur and feed milk to their babies? Some larger mammals are the Tiger, Wild Cat, Elk, Wild Boar, Red Fox, Red Squirrel, Sika Deer, the Siberian Ibex and the Common Hamster. The Elk is a huge member of the deer family. It is a tireless runner that can outrun a horse. The male Elk has enormous antlers. It uses them for fighting other animals and can often kill a wolf or bear. The Siberian Ibex is a wild goat of the high Himalaya Mountains. It can be found at elevations of up to 5,000 meters. It often roams in herds of 20 to 40. The ibex uses its long, broad, knotted horns for fighting off attacks by leopards, wolves, and bears. The Sika Deer is a spotted deer and often rare or hard to find in China. It weighs up to 110 kilograms. The Common Hamster is about 36 centimeters long. This wild hamster is larger than hamsters that are sometimes sold as pets. It can dig a hole or burrow up to 24 meters deep, where it hibernates or sleeps most of the winter. In the springtime, it gathers seeds and nuts at night. The Common Hamster then stores its food in its large cheek pouches.

Two interesting reptiles found in China are the Green Toad and the Chinese Alligator. Remember that reptiles have scales and no fur or hair. They are often egg-layers. The Green Toad has brilliant green blotches covering its dull?colored body. They live in ponds and are found in the spring and summer. The male Green Toads sing to attract the females. The chirping sound is loud and can be heard a mile away. The other larger reptile is the Chinese alligator. It is the only alligator of the Eastern Hemisphere. It lives exclusively on the lower stretch of the Yangtze River. The Chinese alligator eats turtles, and small? to medium?size animals, including chickens and dogs. Adults grow to about 2 meters in length and have a short snout or nose. Chinese alligators have been hunted for their meat and skin.

There are so many interesting animals that live in China! I really learned so much about them! I hope you did too! Please join me again next week when we open our Window on the World on a new country! Goodbye for now, friends!

- updated every Wednesday afternoon -



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