This large stork-like bird gets its name from the shape of its beak. It sort of looks like a shoe. While it was known to ancient communities in Egypt and Arabia, the bird wasn’t actually classified until the nineteenth century, by John Gould.
The bird’s best-known feature is its distinctive bill, which they use to catch and hold on to large, slippery fish that they enjoy eating. The birds will stand in water, motionless until their prey gets close enough. When the time is right, they will dive, or just fall, into the water with their bills open, ready to scoop up some dinner.
Don't let this cute exterior fool you. While both dogs and raccoons are pretty used to living around humans, this creature is 100% a wild animal. Raccoon dogs live in the forests of East Asia and East Europe, where the locals call them by different names, such as neoguri, tanuki, or mangut.
These raccoon-looking wild dogs aren't usually seen outside of their lairs during the daytime. Nocturnal by nature, they prefer to wander around and hunt after the sun goes down.
Isopods, for the most part, don't grow to be so large. Something that, as you look at the picture, you're probably happy to hear. Giant isopods are one of the almost twenty species of large isopods in the genus Bathynomus.
Found mostly in the cold, deep waters of the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans, their large size is due to something called deep-sea gigantism. It is the tendency for creatures of the deep sea to grow much larger than similar species that reside in shallower water.
In most ways, the pacu fish is just like most other fishes. In most ways. As you can see from the picture, the pacu fish has a healthy set of chompers that look uncannily like human teeth.
Fishermen from Papua New Guinea, where the fish is found, had to take special precautions to protect...sensitive areas from this fish, which can be aggressive. The pacu fish is related to the piranha, another omnivorous fish with teeth. However, while the piranha has pointed, razor-sharp teeth, the pacu feed mainly on plant material, meaning their teeth are made more for grinding and chewing, not tearing. Pacu can grow up to almost four feet long.
The mantis shrimp is one of the most unique creatures you're going to see on this list. They're known as sea locusts, prawn killers, and “thumb splitters.” But why, you might ask.
Here's one of the most interesting animal facts you could learn: the mantis shrimp is a predator in tropical and subtropical waters, hunting with only its fists. They're able to strike underwater with such speed and power — an acceleration of more than ten thousand times the force of gravity — that the water they're punching through creates special cavitation bubbles. The bubbles collapse around their prey, creating a force of fifteen hundred newtons.