Monday, September 10, 2007

Ugly animal pageant!

One consequence of being an utter documentary geek is being exposed to a number of rather hideous beasts. After watching a show that consisted of numerous gelatinous walruses flailing about, I began pondering the various ugly animals out there, and how unloved they must feel in contrast to all the snuggly puppies and sleek cheetahs.

So why don't you do your part, and vote in the 1st Annual Hijinks Galore Ugly Animal Pangeant, and make one of these unfortunate little critters king or queen for a day!

Contender #1- The Hyena

Creepy cackles. Matted hair. Sharp teeth. Scavenging tendencies. A diet for carrion. Not to mention inverted anal glands. How hideous is this guy?

Contender #2- The Elephant Seal

It takes a special something to uglify the typical adorable face of a seal. An enormous snout is just that special something. It also helps make the males of the species sound particularly boisterous. Even more of a testament to their repulsiveness is the fact that the male's schnozz is so big in order reabsorb moisture, as during the mating season these lumps never leave the beach to feed.

Contender #3- The Warthog

Contrary to what you might expect from a warty creature who could use a toothbrush and a comb, and spends a wee bit too much time wallowing in the mud, these guys have impressive jumping skills... and a prosmiscuous mating system.

Contender #4- Goblin Shark

Thought I was neglecting our undersea friends? Don't you worry- the goblin shark can hold his own in this competition. He also does a good job at holding onto his liver-- which may inexplicably make up 25% of its body weight! Maybe he has a particular fondness for the sauce? He could certainly use his nose to pry open a few bottles!

Contender #5- Muscovy Duck

I also have not forgotten about our avian friends... particularly, the Muscovy Duck, whose faces unfortunately resemble raw hamburger. Sadly enough, the apparent tumours on their faces are not enough to keep people from dining on them, with one company advertising them as the finest duck available!

Contender #6- Matamata turtle

I'm not entirely sure how this massive skull even allows this critter to move. It is perhaps telling that it tends to merely fit at the bottom of a shallow body of water, extend its nose up like a snorkle to breathe, and captures fish through the power of suction.
Residents of Venezuela, who have perhaps caught onto this pageant, also call them "la fea", meaning the ugly one.

Contender #7- Frogfish

Fitting with their curmedgeonly appearance, these grumpy guys have a wee little lure that protrudes from between their eyes designed to best catch prey (you can't see it well in that photo, but I was intent on showing a full shot of his mug, rather than just a specific curiosity)

Contender #8- Proboscis monkey

I know it may seem as though, looking at the above contenders, that being a champ at this pageant is as simple as having an enormous nose.
I don't necessarily disagree.
However, there is more to this primate than its more obvious traits... like its stupendous swimming abilities. Proboscis monkeys have been found swimming over a mile away from shore!

Contender #9- Marabou Stork

It probably doesn't help the Marabou Stork's case that not only does it look like it has survived a massive blaze, but it also has adapted so few head feathers to best avoid flesh getting caught in its plumage when delving into corpses. Oh, and it is known for defecating on its own legs.

Contender #10- Naked Mole Rat

Last, but certainly not least, is the naked mole rat. These are indeed super rodents, who can move as quickly backwards as they can forwards, and actually, due to the absence of a neurotransmitter, actually feel no physical pain. Although they likely experience a great deal of psychological pain when they look in the mirror.

So, ladies and gents, those are your contenders! You have a week to get your votes in! And I certainly hope to have a better voter turn-out that my last animal pageant...
That's right-- I'm guilt-tripping you!

PS. Special thanks to my new fav website, Ugly Overload, for some material. I promise you the pageant and some of the contenders came straight from my brain... but I got a little help from them, otherwise there would have been hairless cats instead of naked mole rats!


Yoda said...

I think I had something uglier and scarier than all of these combined!

Check it out!

Lord Chimmy said...

I always thought the uacari was pretty ugly. Look like little drunks wearing a fur coat.

Ant said...

They're all hideous.

But I had to go for the Frogfish - mainly because he looks as though he's about to break into a Broadway musical number (probably about how depressed and lonely he is, because he's so ugly...)

Airam said...

I vote for the cute puppy.

iFreud said...

You are too funny! Your descriptions are priceless (the warthog & needing a comb being my fav).

captain corky said...

Damn, the Marabou Stork has got it bad! That thing is uglier than a buzzard.

Abbey said...

I just couldn't bring myself to vote for the hyene or the warthog as ugliest...poor little guys would probably be more hygenic if they could...just look at the ones that were in the Lion King.

benjibopper said...

i see that naked mole rat is kicking serious ass here, as it should be. there is nothing uglier on the macroscopic level. i do have a contender on a postcard i got in indonesia though - i'll have to post a pic of that sometime whenever i unpack my camera.

also, i got to see a warthog in a national park in west africa and they're much cuter live.

Michelle said...

they're all disgusting!

Sheila said...

I voted for the weird shark! Wow, now those are all some ugly animals!

Princess of the Universe said...

I voted for the shark out of fear- I think it would know if I didn't and come to find me!

Beth said...

Tough choice - they all made me cringe - but I had to settle on the naked mole rat. God, it's hideous.

(loved your commentary as to each)

LeeEeeMuR said...

can't vote for pumba (warthog) nor the hyena because sadly they are one of my favourite animals... the shark is super nasty .. but from the list the rats win hands down.... however I once saw a picture of an animal that lives in the deepest part of the ocean that was pretty gruesome... has to live there because it's totally dark and nobody can see it lol

Crashdummie said...

I cant help it but I somewhat lovehate hyenas – they are really iiih but the animated version of them in Lion King kinda reminds me of myself, at least their hysterical, high pitched laughter! *grin*

Frogfish? Omg you gotto be kidding me! It looks like a mutation & experiment gone wrong! iiiiH! But then again, almost everyone looks like that. Aaaah I cant see the pics, I’m so gonna get nightmares now… hard to pick one – they all deserv to win.. hehehe

All Mod Cons said...

I think they're all beautiful in their own special way...marvels of nature.

Honest Guv'...

Ultra Toast Mosha God said...

This is close run, isn't it?

I'm excited!

SMARTBuddy said...

Sharky is a right wrongun

cdp said...

I went with the warthog. I was leaning towards hyena, but it looks kinda like McD's ex-wife; and she should never win anything.

Although I do love Pumba.

The Duke said...

Large liver helps you stay bouyant.


libby said...

i think i just barfed in my mouth those animals are FUUUUGLY!

All Mod Cons said...

Results are in...come see!

Crushed by Ingsoc said...

I voted for the monkey.

All monkeys are cool.

eric1313 said...

I had to go with the mole rat.


Your writing, on the other hand, is as flawless as ever.

babyfiona said...

OMG where the hell you get those weird animal pictures?