By Carlos Gamino

There are between 8.7 million species on earth and 1 trillion—give or take a few million—and we haven’t even found them all.

With that said, some of the animals we have found are downright weird. Take a peek at the world’s strangest animals and figure out which one is your favorite. I’m pretty sure that the Aye-Aye is my spirit animal (at least until I’ve had my coffee in the morning). After that, it’s anyone’s guess.

The Aye-Aye

The Aye-Aye - Carlos Gamino

The Aye-Aye – Carlos Gamino

The Aye-Aye has sharp claws on all their fingers so they can cling to the treetops of Madagascar. They’re related to chimps, apes, and—you guessed it—humans. They rarely set foot (or feet) on the ground, and they’re nocturnal; they sleep in what looks like a beehive from the outside.

 

 

 

The Maned Wolf

Maned Wolf - Carlos Gamino

Maned Wolf – Carlos Gamino

 

 

Is it a deer? A wolf? A hyena?

Not sure—but this 3-foot creature weighs about 50 pounds and is native to a few countries around South America. With 7-inch-long ears, a mane, and long legs, the maned wolf has almost no natural predators. The only thing endangering it is habitat destruction.

The Dumbo Octopus

 Dumbo Octopus – Carlos Gamino

Dumbo Octopus – Carlos Gamino

The Dumbo Octopus’s real name is Grimpoteuthis, but the former’s much cuter. They live at depths of 9,800 to 13,000 feet, so we don’t see them that often. This cute critter is actually a real killer—it swallows its prey whole. They’re found in New Zealand and Australia, California, Oregon, the Philippines, and in Papua New Guinea.

 

 

 

The Babirusa

Babirusa – Carlos Gamino

Babirusa – Carlos Gamino

We tried to find the most… attractive picture we could of this guy—the babirusa—but it turns out that they’re just pretty ugly. Native to the swamps and rainforests of Indonesia, these porkers (no, really, they’re pigs) have barrel-like bodies sitting on delicate legs similar to those of deer. Babirusa actually means pig-deer in the Malay language.

 

 

The Blobfish

Blobfish – Carlos Gamino

Blobfish – Carlos Gamino

Forget that he looks like a poorly-aged Ziggy and focus on the fact that it spends the majority of its life floating around the ocean floor, munching crustaceans and whatever else floats into its mouth. It can’t actually hunt prey—it’s really a blobfish because it doesn’t have much muscle. (The blobfish also has the distinction of being voted the World’s Ugliest Animal in 2013.) It really has a face that only a mother blobfish could love.

What Do You Think?

Have you heard of any of these crazy animals? Which one’s your favorite? Share your thoughts—and pictures of animals that make your “ugly list”—on my Facebook page or on Twitter!

Carlos Gamino