Golden Poison Dart Frogs.

golden-poison-arrow-frog_5842_600x450The golden poison dart frog is considered one of the most toxic animals on Earth. A single specimen measuring two inches (five centimeters) has enough venom to kill ten grown men. Indigenous Emberá people of Colombia have used its powerful venom for centuries to tip their blowgun darts when hunting, hence the species’ name.
These brightly colored amphibians are among the largest of the more than 100 poison dart frog species, averaging more than one inch (two and a half centimeters) in length. They live within a tiny plot of rain forest on the Pacific coast of Colombia.
And though the population in its small range is abundant, widespread decimation of the rain forest has landed this species on international endangered lists.
Their coloring, which can be yellow, orange, or pale green, depending on their particular range, is deliberately ostentatious to ward off potential predators, a tactic called aposematic coloration. Their diet includes flies, crickets, ants, termites, and beetles.
Scientists are unsure of the source of this frog’s amazing toxicity, but it is possible they assimilate plant poisons, which are carried by their prey. Poison dart frogs raised in captivity and isolated from insects in their native habitat never develop venom.
The medical research community has been exploring possible medicinal uses for the golden poison dart frog’s venom. They have already developed a synthetic version of one of the venom’s compounds that has promise as a powerful painkiller.

via Golden Poison Dart Frogs, National Geographic.

“White Creatures.”

albino-animals-12Some of the animals on this list are albinos, while others are simply members of rare white species. Whatever the case, mankind has been fascinated by such animals for ages. Some consider them to be sacred, and others – demonic.
Whether you find them strange, beautiful, ghostly or freakish, we hope you enjoy this collection of animals that nature simply forgot to color in.
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See more Images via Animals that Nature Simply Forgot to Color.

“Endings.”

laura-ball06A series of watercolors composed of plants and animals that are weaved together and function as a whole. The focus of her paintings is on endangered and extinct animals that exists in the subconscious and manifest themselves in dreams once gone from the world.
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Within the subconscious, our faults and fears, shortcomings and struggles, manifest in corporeal form and appear in dreams either as monsters or as encounters that threaten our survival. We journey inward in these dreams, crossing the thresholds and boundaries of our mental landscape until we reach the core of the psyche. It is in this realm that life-saving and sustaining battles unfold, and the monsters we encounter change before us as the definition of evil and good moves from black-and-white to shades of gray.
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See more Images via Faith is Torment | Art and Design Blog: Endings: Paintings by Laura Ball.

The Crucifix Frog.

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Photo: This Crucifix Frog looks a little Frowny by Dr. Paul Stewart
by Becky Crew
LOOK AT THIS fat little guy. No one has more personality than this warty, ping-pong ball of a guy.
He’s a crucifix frog (Notaden bennettii), native to western New South Wales and south-western Queensland.
The crucifix frog (often called a toad) is decorated with a striking black, red, and green cross-shaped pattern that runs all the way across its bright yellow back, as you can see below.
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Looking at the back of the crucifix frog, you can see how its name came about. (Image Credit: Dr Paul Anthony Stewart/Flickr: Paulhypno)
Obviously these colours wouldn’t do much to help the crucifix frog camouflage against the blackish flood plains it lives on – quite the opposite, they’re there to make the frog stand out.
The crucifix frog is one of the only species of Australian frog to employ aposematism, which is the use of bright patterning to ward off predators.
Now read more via The crucifix frog with a grumpy frown – Australian Geographic.

The Art of Mohrbacher.

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Above: The Behemoth is a beast mentioned in Job 40:15–24. Suggested identities range from a mythological creature to an elephant, hippopotamus, rhinoceros or crocodile.
Some creationists believe it to be a description of a sauropod due to its tail being described as like a cedar tree.
Metaphorically, the name has come to be used for any extremely large or powerful entity.
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Peter’s Deviant Art Website:
http://bit.ly/1jSfyTU

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Monsters and Beasts.

medieval-dragon-e1381687718600Dragons – In her book Monsters and Grotesques in Medieval Manuscripts, Alixe Bovey explains “the monsters of the Bible are few, but important: the first is the serpent who tempts Adam and Eve to eat the forbidden fruit, resulting in their expulsion from Paradise.
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Generally interpreted to be the Devil in disguise, in several ways this serpent is the archetype for demonic monsters of the Middle Ages.
Its snaking body a kind of metaphor for opportunistic cunning, the serpent is able to prey on human weaknesses such as pride and greed.”
The dragon is the ultimate form of the serpent and can be found in many medieval tales. In bestiaries it is said that their most powerful weapon is the tail, which could be used to squeeze and suffocate their prey.
Elephants are said to be their mortal enemy, but one can also find several saints who do battle with dragons.
via Mediavalists