We’re on day three of our you choose week and we had a friend vote for moles! So of course we narrowed down to the star nosed mole! This crazy looking creature is sure to be popular, so let’s get moving and head underground to meet this wild animal!
- The first thing you notice on a star nosed mole is the nose. It is compromised of 22 finger like projections, 11 on each nostril. Those projections are called tendrils.
- Star nosed moles live in wetlands and moist habitats along the coast of Northeastern North America.
- Star nosed moles can grow up to 8 inches and weigh up to 2 oz.
- They are insectivores. They have 44 teeth to crunch up insect exoskeletons.
- Star nosed mole nose projections are full of extremely sensitive receptors called Eimer’s organs. Other moles have these receptors, but the star nosed mole has 25,000 of them; more than any other animal!
- Star nosed moles are functionally blind, so those crazy looking tendrils give them a picture of their environment and of their prey! It can tell if a prey is edible in 8 milliseconds! WOW!
- They can smell underwater too!
- Their tendrils have no muscles or bones in them. They are not used as a scent organ. The mole has nostrils that use for smell.
- Star nosed moles dig shallow tunnels in the wet ground. They are also excellent swimmers, using those wide front feet and back feet to help them swim.
- They tend to be out on the ground more than other moles who stay in their burrows.
We could on days and days about the star nosed moles. Those tendrils are unique in the animal kingdom. Scientists have been studying these critters for years and continue to learn so many things about them. They even think they may be able to pick up slight electrical fields! WOW! Our earth is full of so many crazy creatures that are so fascinating!