Characteristics of Animals and Their Habitats to Get Closer to Nature

Characteristics of Animals and Their Habitats – Talking about animals, we must be reminded of the surrounding environment and even the place where we have taken shelter so far as a whole, the Earth. Since ancient times, we have lived side by side with various creatures on this planet. Fundamentally, living things on Earth are grouped into three, namely humans, plants, and animals.

If you look back a few years, environmental issues are not something new. Humans are often the reason for the extinction of other species on our beloved blue planet. In order to get closer and not at odds with other living things that are our friends, we need to understand their species, right?

Animals, companions and friends

Quoting Wonderopolis , it is estimated that there are around 8.7 million species on Earth. Scientists who estimate this number are sure, 1-2 million species of which are animals! From that big number, how deep do we know them? Not many.

This is because the same study estimates that 86 percent of all land species and 91 percent of all marine species have yet to be discovered or described. In fact, the numbers above are still quite shallow compared to when we include insect species as well.

For example, scientists estimate that there are more than 10,000 trillion ants living at any one time. Based on those numbers, some scientists estimate the total insect population to be as high as 10 trillion, which is 10 billion billion! That number has led at least one expert to estimate the total animal population on Earth to be around 20 trillion, or 20 billion billion!

However, you don’t have to think too far about how many insects there are altogether. As a small example, try to glance at the lives of our neighbors. Some of them must have kept animals, or at least had kept them. In this world, there are dozens of animals that are suitable as human companions in life, right?

Estimate how close we are to them, for example cats. Apart from domestic cats, we must understand that the cat population itself is already very large. So, isn’t it a wrong step, right, if we try to understand the characteristics of other species well and treat them accordingly?

Characteristics of Animals and their Habitat

Does Sinaumed’s know about the kingdom of animals? Of course, the various types of animals have their own “kingdom”, more precisely, the “biological kingdom” that fundamentally distinguishes their types. Even more interesting, this kingdom will still be divided into more than 30 groups or phyla!

Very broadly, the characteristics of animals are divided into two, namely vertebrates and invertebrates. Each means that some animals have backbones and some don’t.

In vertebrates, animals are further classified into five classes, namely amphibians, birds, fish, reptiles and mammals. All five are included in the phylum chordata. Meanwhile, most invertebrate animals are in the arthropod phylum.

1. Vertebrate Animals

Sinaumed’s , now we will get acquainted with animals with vertebrates, take a look at their characteristics, and see their habitat. Let’s see together!

a. Amphibian Animals

For starters, let’s start with the class of amphibians. This is the class to which the toad and its friends are assigned. In general, they require a moist or watery environment to form a habitat and survive there.

The following are the characteristics of amphibians:

  • Cold-blooded.
  • Absorb water and breathe through their thin skin.
  • Have at least one special skin gland that is used for the defense system.
  • Most of them have a life cycle of egg, larva, then adult.

We can meet the appearance of amphibian animals around the world. Here are examples:

  • Frog
  • Newt
  • Salamanders
  • Frog
Amphibian Habitat

Adult amphibians can live both in water and on land. In the larval stage, they can only live in water. However, in the adult stage, amphibians spend most of their lives on land, usually in moist habitats such as forests.

More than 75 percent of all the world’s species of frogs and frogs live in tropical rainforests. Several species can be found in water at almost any time of the year. Some of them even like to live in drier prairies and deserts.

Because of their special skin, amphibian species need very specific living conditions. Too much sun can damage their cells, while too much wind can dry out their skin and dehydrate them. For this reason, amphibian habitats are very vulnerable to being disturbed or contaminated with chemicals such as weed killers.

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b. Birds

As we know, birds can generally fly. Furthermore, birds are a type of warm-blooded vertebrate. Then what again?

Its class of birds, Aves, is just one class of the larger Kingdom Animalia . Birds have several characteristics that are similar to other classes, namely reptiles. However, they also have some unique features. Let’s take a look at their main features:

  • Endothermic: they can maintain a constant body temperature independently of themselves, independent of external factors. Alias, they certainly will not get a fever easily.
  • They are bipedal: move on two hind limbs or feet when on the ground.
  • Its upper limbs had evolved into special structures, namely wings which made it possible to fly.
  • Most of their bodies are spindle-shaped, these muscles are a special feature that makes them more comfortable and effective in flight.
  • The bird’s bones are hollow inside, to reduce the overall weight of the body.
  • The fur is colorful and covers the whole body except for the legs which are covered with scales.
  • Has a beak instead of a mouth with teeth.
  • The heart has four chambers. In this way, oxygen-rich and oxygen-poor blood is properly divided. This helps maintain a constant temperature.
  • The nervous system is complex and the brain is well developed. Many birds are known to be very easy to teach and intelligent.
  • Their eggs develop outside the body, but are still under the care of their parents: two or one.

After the characteristics, here are examples of bird class animals. We will find it easy because they are famous animals!

  • Albatross
  • Chicken
  • hummingbird
  • Hawk
  • Flamingo
  • Ostrich
  • Owl
  • Parrot
  • Penguin
  • Dove
Bird Habitat

Although there is considerable overlap in the diets provided by different habitats (e.g. insect diets), some habitats are rich in certain food sources.

Here are examples of bird habitats that Sinaumed’s needs to know about!

  1. Meadow
  2. Jungle or rainforest
  3. Wetlands
  4. coast

3. Fish

As far as is known, fish are the oldest known vertebrates. They have existed since ancient times, when other types of animals had not fully evolved into what they are today. Here are the characteristics:

  • Including ectothermic or cold-blooded, they depend on the environment to regulate body temperature.
  • Fish have fins.
  • Most of the fish have a body covered in scales and breathe through gills, although not all.
  • Certainly, living underwater.

Currently, there are more than 300 thousand species of fish that live. This figure is more than all other vertebrate groups combined! What types are examples?

  • Eel
  • Hagfish
  • Lamprey
  • Small fish
  • Salmon
  • Seahorses
  • Shark
Fish Habitats

Fresh water, sea or brackish water is the habitat for vertebrate fish. Some species can tolerate environments with a higher salinity than the general seawater salinity. In fact, some species of gobies can tolerate salinity levels as high as 60 ppt.

Fish live in almost all aquatic habitats. Different fish species are adapted for different habitats: rocky shores, coral reefs, kelp forests, rivers and streams, lakes and ponds, under sea ice, deep sea, and other fresh, salt, and brackish water environments.

In general, fish also rely on oxygen dissolved in water for respiration.

4. Mammals

Mammals are naturally warm-blooded animals whose bodies are covered with hairy hair. This allows them to live anywhere from the cold arctic regions to tropical forests.

In general, they have the same main features even though they are of different types, such as monotremes, marsupials, or placentas. Here are some features:

  • Provide nutrition in the form of milk to their children.
  • Its body is covered with a coat of blubber (like that of a dolphin), fur (lions, cats, dogs, and so on), spines (hedgehogs), and scales that overlap with fur (pangolins).
  • Give birth after the child grows in the womb. This applies except for the monotreme species which lay eggs.

As far as we know, there are currently more than 5,500 species of mammals in the world. Here are some examples of them:

  • Aardvarks
  • Bat
  • Elephant
  • hamsters
  • Rabbit
  • Rhinoceros
  • Pope
Mammal Habitats

Mammals live in many different habitats, including deserts, arctic, oceans, forests, mountains, tundra, grasslands, and savannas. Mammals are also common compared to reptiles and amphibians. If we go to almost any part of the world, we will find evidence of mammal activity. But, it may not be the type of mammal we are used to.

From the tropics and deserts to the temperate zones and polar regions, every type of climate has a diverse ecology of mammal species. In that climate, you can see a wide variety of adaptations and behaviors that further separate these animals.

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One of the reasons mammals are so successful in all habitats is because they have diversified so much over thousands of years. One example is how mammals evolved to become marine, aquatic, or semi-aquatic compared to land mammals.

5. Reptiles

Currently, not all reptiles live on land. Even so, this one species is widely considered to be the first vertebrate to live entirely on land. Sinaumed’s , let’s look at the characteristics of this reptile!

  • Cold-blooded reptiles, they cannot regulate their own body temperature like mammals. This is the main reason we often see them in warm or hot places.
  • Have rough scales or horns. It is made of alpha and beta-keratin from the epidermal layer, in contrast to mammals. Therefore, their skin is actually thinner than we think.
  • Lay eggs. Some species of snakes and lizards give birth to live young (e.g., Eurasian newt), but most reptiles are oviparous, meaning they produce eggs (e.g. crocodiles and turtles).
  • Have one or two well-developed lungs.
  • In order to find their prey, some reptiles use coatings on living things to absorb airborne chemicals, such as snakes and lizards.
  • They have two different food orientations, namely carnivores and herbivores. Examples of carnivorous reptiles are snakes and lizards, while herbivores are turtles.
  • All reptiles molt. The cycle varies depending on the type.
  • They have four legs or are descended from four-legged animals.

Reptiles come in various sizes, from small to large. Sinaumed’s , do you often encounter examples of the reptiles below?

  • Crocodile
  • Gecko
  • Lizard
  • Turtle
  • Snake
  • Turtle
Reptile Habitat

Reptiles depend on conditions that allow them to maintain body temperature, they must be able to bask and avoid temperature extremes. So, they will need access to direct sunlight, protection from wind and excessive heat, a sizable population of prey species, as well as cover to escape predators.

They will also need suitable breeding sites for the species to lay eggs and space for suitable hibernation, Sinaumed’s .

On the other hand, there are various things that reptiles often avoid to make a place to live, aka their habitat. Examples include uniform habitats and a lack of trees and shrubs. They need the trail as a place to lay their eggs and a place that is “a bit messy”.

That is, reptiles actually like places that look unused and natural, such as soil that is not too perfect and uneven. This would be the perfect home for the reptiles. They also need habitats that naturally provide avenues for movement, but not too tidy.

Not only in large habitats, reptiles can also live in relatively small areas, for example gardens, school yards, and other possible places. Even locations near villages can become reptile habitats if conditions are right enough to encourage colonies and maintain their populations.

Suitable Animals to Keep

Getting to know more closely about the animals around us is certainly fun, right? Among us, there are even many people who really love certain animals and raise them to be friends at home. Keepers usually have a gentle nature that can take good care of their pets.

After all, raising animals also has many benefits: We can learn to be responsible, to be more caring and considerate, to reduce anxiety. In fact, we often see people who take care of animals that were abandoned. Of course this is a good attitude that many like.

Most people’s pets are indeed mammals. However, there are also other species that can be kept. These pets are included in this list:

  1. Dog
  2. Cat
  3. Rabbit
  4. Fish
  5. Bird
  6. Lizard
  7. Snake
  8. hamsters

Conclusion

When we go to school, we generally get biology lessons. Lessons about the characteristics of animals and other living things are included in biology, and not infrequently we all like it. This is because other living things at first look unique in the eyes of those of us who are just getting to know them. As #FriendsWithoutLimits, sinaumedia is committed to providing quality books. Come on, be more diligent in reading books with us, greetings literacy!

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