Jan 1

As we say goodbye to 2014, we say hello to 2015 and what’s more traditional than ringing in the New Year with some beautiful babies! We’ve set ourselves to the difficult task of identifying some of the cutest and most interesting wildlife babies to get us off to a fresh start on January 1.

After a look at this list, we bet you’ll be looking forward to a happy (and maybe even cuddly) new year!

Bundles of joy

Ten day old brown bears

At ten days old, these brown bears hardly resemble the large furry adults they will one day become. Brown bears usually have litters of one to four cubs with cubs reaching maturity at four to six years of age.

Hey everyone look right

Group of ostrich chicks

These fluffy  and speckled ostrich chicks look very different from the black and white adults they all aspire to become. While ostriches lay some of the largest eggs among birds, they also hold the distinct honor of being the fastest running bird at an astonishing 43 mph.

Cute as a button

Harp seal pup

The angelic harp seal pup is distinguished by its white and pristine fur that differentiates it from the silvery-grey color of the adult. The pups white fur becomes whiter during their first two weeks, but they molt soon after and develop the silvery-grey of adults.

I present, the (tiny) emperor

Emperor newt tadpole

This tiny tadpole is actually the dignified emperor newt, which develops orange and black coloration when it reaches adulthood. Females usually lay between 80 and 240 eggs with eggs hatching after 15 to 40 days.

What’s up?

Southern cassowary chick

The small chick of the Southern cassowary looks nothing like the imposing adult that has a helmet of tough skin on its head. Eggs are incubated for around 50 days and may require parental care for up to 16 months.

Two is better than one

Kemp’s ridley turtle hatchlings

The critically endangered Kemp’s ridley turtle is one of the smallest marine turtles with adults weighing less than 100 pounds. Hatchlings are grey-black all over compared to the grey-olive adults. About 90 eggs are lain per clutch, with two to three clutches lain a year.

What’s black and yellow all over?

Corroboree frog froglets

The corroboree frog is a small frog whose defining characteristics are the lack of webbed toes and their visually stunning black and yellow coloration. Females lay around 26 eggs with tadpoles remaining in their protective egg for up to 7 months.

Just hanging out

Amur leopard cub

This is one extreme feline, since the Amur leopard resides in the frigid landscapes of the Russian Far East. These wonderful big cats have a thick fur that can grow up 7cm during winter and are among one of the rarest leopard subspecies.

Look into my eyes

dwarf crocodile photo

Infant dwarf crocodile

The pint-sized dwarf crocodile are the smallest of the bunch with adults rarely reaching 5 feet in length. Females usually lay 10 eggs per clutch and take 100 days to incubate! Young crocodiles are about 28 cm when they hatch.

Did we capture you favorite babies from the animal kingdom? If not, feel free to share your favorite Arkive baby pictures in the comments below!

Happy New Year from the Arkive Team to you!

William Lazaro, Arkive Social Media Intern, Wildscreen USA

Jan 2

For those of you looking to try a new form of exercise in the New Year to tone up and get fit, why not follow the example of these animal athletes and take up yoga? By working through a variety of postures and mastering your breathing, you too could be as strong and limber as the creatures below – check out some of their efforts and get inspired!

Downward dog…

Cape fox image

This Cape fox, the smallest and only ‘true fox’ in southern Africa, appears to have mastered one of yoga’s most recognisable postures – the downward dog. In fact, he looks like he’s pretty much doing it in his sleep…!

 

…or should it be downward cat?!

Wildcat image

Not to be outdone by a canine, this wildcat is showing off its skill in a bid to get the name of the posture changed to give it a more feline feel! This species is the wild ancestor of the domestic cat, and can weigh up to eight kilos.

 

Bird-like balance

White-rumped sandpiper image

A big part of practising yoga is learning to be centred and balanced, as demonstrated by this white-rumped sandpiper. We’re not sure what this particular posture is called, but it certainly seems popular in the bird world!

 

Sun Salutation

New England crayfish

A sun salutation is formed of a sequence of postures, including downward dog and cobra. One particular pose held at the beginning and end of the sun salutation sequence consists of extending the arms over the head and raising the face towards the sky, as demonstrated beautifully by this colourful New England crayfish.

 

Locust pose

Northern elephant seal image

The great thing about yoga is that it can be practised virtually anywhere – this northern elephant seal has decided to bond with nature and try the locust pose out on the beach. Although generally not particularly agile on land, the northern elephant seal has long, webbed feet which provide great propulsion to effectively glide through the water.

 

Warrior III?!

Red ruffed lemur image

Despite having a tail which can reach up to 62 centimetres in length, which is longer than its body and could potentially get in the way, this red ruffed lemur has not been put off trying yoga. Here we can see it preparing to go into full Warrior III pose, showing some reasonable leg extension.

 

Handstand

Orange-winged dropwing image

More advanced yoga practitioners can master the art of the handstand, which requires core strength and a lot of concentration. This orange-winged dropwing is providing us with a good example of a handstand, but does the use of all six legs not count as cheating?!

 

Flexible and fossorial

Naked mole rat image

This naked mole rat is trying what is known as the full boat pose during its subterranean yoga session. Look at that concentration! As naked mole rats are not able to control their body temperature internally like other mammals, this guy will have to retreat to cooler parts of its burrow if it gets too hot.

 

Aquatic yoga

Manatee image

Bikram yoga, practised in a hot, steamy environment, has been all the rage recently, but this manatee has taken it a step further and has developed aquatic yoga. Here we can see a beautiful example of a tail-stand! If you don’t like cold water, not to fear – manatees ideally require water above 20 degrees Celsius to survive, so these sessions are bound to be nice and warm!

 

Lotus

Verreaux's sifaka image

This Verreaux’s sifaka is doing its own version of the lotus pose – this particular individual is clearly taking a break from leaping gracefully along the floor of its forest home, an action for which it is well known.

 

Relax

Rivera red-belly toad imageHoney bee image

 

After a long, hard yoga session, there’s nothing better than taking a moment to relax in child’s pose, just like this Rivera red-belly toad and honey bee.

 

Namaste!

 

Kathryn Pintus, ARKive Content and Outreach Officer

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