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24 Mesmerizing Examples Of Animal Camouflage In The Wild

For animals that have developed it, camouflage is often their first line of defense against predators and their best offense to catch their prey. Today, we look at 24 astounding examples of camouflage that make animals perfectly blend in with their environment:

Viewing note: After each picture, the animal will be revealed in the following slide.

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Cheetah Cub Circled

A Cheetah cub hides among the tall grasses of the Kalahari Desert in South Africa.

Coyote Circled

The coat of a coyote lends itself to disguise in a snowy field in Washington, USA.

Bull Snake Circled

Native to North America, bull snakes use constriction to attack and kill their primary prey, rodents.

Impala Circled

An impala hides among vegetation in Chobe National Park, Botswana.

Blue Dacnis Circled

A blue dacnis rests in the flora in Panama.

Crab Spider Circled

Throughout the day, crab spiders will change their color scheme depending on where they're looking for prey. Here, a crab spider melds into the bark of a tree.

Lizard Circled

A lizard is virtually undetectable when hiding in verdant vegetation.

Frog Circled

This frog is nearly invisible against the backdrop of a grey tree.

Iguana Circled

An iguana hangs out among the flora of Costa Rica.

Baby Owls Circled

A group of owlets peer out from their nest on the side of a cliff.

Leafy Seadragon Circled

Found on the western coast of Australia, leafy seadragons use leaf-like protrusions to hide in the ocean.

Long Spinnered Bark Spider Circled

A long-spinnered bark spider disguises itself in tree bark to ambush prey in Masoala Peninsula National Park, Madagascar.

Mountain Lion Circled

A mountain lion takes a break in an alcove in the Rocky Mountains.

Owl Camouflage Circled

An owl makes perfect use of its surroundings to disguise itself.

Platypelis Grandis Frog Circled

A juvenile platypelis grands frog hides among the ground vegetation of a forest in Madagascar.

Queen Snake Circled

Found primarily in the southern United States, queen snakes reside by streams where they feed on their primary prey, fresh water crayfish.

Mossy Leaf Tailed Gecko Circled

The mossy leaf-tailed gecko is a professional when it comes to ambushing prey in the wild.

Seahorse Circled

Pygmy seahorses -- whose primary environment are the coral reefs of southeast Asia -- use their size (no longer than an inch long) and color to evade predators.

Spectacled Caiman Circled

A spectacled caiman -- a mid-size crocodile indigenous to South America -- hides itself in Venezuela.

Squirrel Circled

A California ground squirrel blends into the surrounding rocky environment.

Three Leaf Litter Toads Circled

Three leaf-litter toads blend into the forest floor in Panama.

Uroplatus Gecko Camouflage Circled

A mossy leaf-tailed gecko hides by blending into a tree trunk in a tropical forest in Madagascar.

White Tailed Ptarmigans Circled

White-tailed ptarmigans are perfectly adapted for the snowy confines of Manitoba, Canada.

Mediterranean Octopus Circled

A Mediterranean octopus uses its color and texture to mimic the ocean floor.

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Cute But Challenged: The Difficult Life Of An Albino Animal

Albino animals look cute, but the lack of melanin in their bodies causes a fair amount of hardship for these pigment-challenged creatures. The complex polymer determines skin and hair color, and can impact vision and its development. This means that in addition to being far easier to spot by potential predators and prey, albino animals struggle with basic survival skills. Here are some of the common plights of albino animals, and other facts about their unique lives:

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Albino Animals Reindeer

About 1 in 10,000 animals are born with albinism. Image Source: Imgur

Albino Animals Peacock

The term derives from the Latin word Albus, meaning “white”. Image Source: Flickr/Brian Burger

Albino Animals Donkey

To have albinism, an organism must inherit one or more defective genes that makes it impossible to produce normal amounts of melanin, a pigment that colors skin and hair. Image Source: Flickr/Roberto Cossu

Albino Animals Porcupine

Animals lacking this pigment can either be pure or partial albinos, depending on how defective their inherited genes are. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

Albino Animals Snake

In snakes, partial albinism is more common than full albinism. Image Source: Pixabay

Albino Animals Turtle

Albino turtles tend to have yellowish shells and pink eyes. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

Albino Animals Ferret

In addition to the aesthetic effects albinism has on animals, it also affects their physical development. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

Albino Animals Kitten

The absence of melanin in the eyes results in abnormal development, which often means that those wth albinism struggle with depth perception. Image Source: Pixabay

Albino Animals Squirrel

Some animals aren't as negatively physically impacted by albinism, like the squirrel. Its retina differs from all other mammals, so albinism affects their eyesight less than normal. Image Source: Flickr/Peter Trimming

Albino Animals Catfish

Fish, like this catfish, aren't as affected, either. They don’t have melanin in their inner ear, meaning that their hearing is less likely to be affected by albinism than in mammals. Image Source: Wikipedia

Albino Animals Alligator

Many albinos classified as predators die from starvation because they lack their natural color camouflage. Would-be prey can easily see them coming, and therefore have time to plot an escape. Image Source: Wikipedia

Albino Animals Deer

Likewise, animals that are more likely to be prey lack the natural coloring that helps them hide from predators, so they are more apt to be seen and killed. Image Source: Flickr/Paolo Brandao

Albino Animals Rat

The condition also has social effects, which is problematic when it comes time to mate. Many albino animals are outcast by their peers. Image Source: Pixabay

albino animals gorilla

As such, numerous albino animals live in captivity. Snowflake, featured above, is the only documented gorilla with albinism. He was born in the wild, but captured and kept at the Barcelona Zoo. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

Albino Animals Wallaby

This is Betty, the resident albino wallaby at the Columbus Zoo, in Powell, Ohio. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

Albino Animals Penguin

The only known albino penguin, Snowdrop, was born in 2002 at England’s Bristol Zoo. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

Albino Animals Koala

There is only one documented albino koala, and his name is Onya-Birri. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

Albino Animals Water Buffalo

Some cultures worship albino animals, and believe that they are good luck charms. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons\

Albino Animals Kangaroo

Native American tribes harbored significant reverence for albino animals, for instance. Whiteness was not seen as a symbol of "purity" as in Western cultures, but wisdom. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

Albino Animals Mice

Despite differences, many of these tribes abided by one common principle: the albino animal is not to be killed. Image Source: Wikipedia

Albino Animals Cow

If the albino animal were killed, its killer would be cursed. The underlying thinking was that, as its coloring makes it an easier mark, it is unfair game for the hunter. Image Source: Pixabay

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Enjoyed these? Check out the animal kingdom’s most fascinatingly bizarre color mutations, or witness 27 astounding pictures of animal camouflage in action.

What We Loved This Week, Dec. 13 – 19

Volcano Lightning

A thunderstorm complete with volcanic lightning rages over Mount Etna in Catania, Italy. Image Source: The Atlantic

2015’s Most Astounding Volcanic Eruptions Around The World

Volcano Red Clouds

Due to a massive smoke column over 12 miles high, the eruption of Chile’s Calbuco volcano caused widespread evacuation in the surrounding area. Image Source: The Atlantic

About 50 of the world’s 1,500 or so active volcanoes erupt each year. While 2015 may not have seen more eruptions than usual, many of those eruptions sure seemed especially astonishing. In August, Hawaii’s Mount Kilauea erupted while a 3.8 magnitude earthquake occurred underneath the volcano. In December, Sicily’s Mount Etna erupted twice in one month, spewing lava and ash more than a mile into the air. And there’s plenty more where that came from…

Volcano Red Glow

The Villarrica Volcano of Pucon, Chile, is among the most active in South America. Image Source: The Atlantic

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27 Astounding Pictures Of Animal Camouflage In Action

Over the course of millions of years of evolution, the inhabitants of Earth have devised some incredible abilities to ensure their survival. Case in point: The amazing camouflage that animals employ to surprise their prey or evade their predators. Below, we look at 27 incredible examples of animal camouflage in action:

Viewing note: After each picture, the animal will be revealed in the following slide.

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Leaf Tailed Gecko Circled

A Satanic Leaf-tailed Gecko is not only an expert at mimicking leaves and branches, it can also shed its tail to evade predators.

Giraffe Circled

A giraffe melts into the vegetation in Transvaal, South Africa.

American Pika Circled

The American Pika -- a rodent native to the mountainous Western regions of Canada and the United States -- blends in against a rocky surface.

Baron Caterpillar Circled

Native to southeast Asia, the Baron Caterpillar's disguise allows it to feed on mango and cashew nut trees undetected by its predators.

Animal Camouflage Great Gray Owl Circled

A Great Gray Owl -- the world's largest owl by length -- blends into a tree in Oregon.

Asian Vine Snake Circled

An Asian Vine Snake uses surrounding foliage adjacent to water to catch its primary prey, fish.

Leopard Circled

A leopard sits in the underbrush in South Africa's Kruger National Park.

Blue Crowned Parrot Circled

A Blue-crowned parrot disappears in the verdant rain forest of Belize.

Wolf Circled

A wolf peeks behind a tree during fall in Montana.

Brimstone Butterfly Circled

The color and shape of the wings of the Brimstone Butterfly allow it to blend in perfectly with green vegetation while resting.

Buff Tip Moth Circled

The Buff-Tip Moth has developed an astounding camouflage that helps it to hide in plain sight among trees and branches.

Common Snipe Circled

A Common Snipe hides among riparian vegetation in Minnesota.

Great Horned Owl Circled

A Great Horned Owl hides among autumn foliage in Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, Oregon.

Wolf Spider Circled

Found on every continent on the planet, Wolf Spiders are opportunistic predators that will use their surroundings to ambush their prey.

Great Potoo Circled

A nocturnal creature, the Great Potoo hides during the day by perching itself on trees.

Horned Adders Circled

A Horned Adder matches the sand of the Namib Desert, where they disappear completely by burying themselves.

Japanese Macaques Circled

A family of Japanese Macaques hide in plain sight amidst their rocky habitat on Honshu Island, Japan.

Klipspringers Circled

Two Klipspringers camouflage themselves among rocky cliffs in Botswana.

Willow Ptarmigan Circled

A Willow Ptarmigan blends into the snow while foraging in Churchill, Manitoba, Canada.

Lichen Spider Circled

A Lichen Spider perfectly blends into a tree trunk at the Erawan National Park in Thailand.

Male Spotted Deer Circled

A Spotted Deer, also known as a Chital, disappears in a forest in India.

Nighthawk Circled

A Nighthawk conceals itself among rocks in eastern Washington.

Pygmy Seahorse Camouflage

The Pygmy Seahorse is an expert at camouflaging itself in sea corals to evade detection by potential predators.

Snow Leopard Circled

A Snow Leopard peers over the edge of a rock in the Himalayas.

Stone Flounder Circled

A Righteye Flounder is perfectly adapted to going undetected on the ocean floor.

Uroplatus Geckos Circled

Uroplatus geckos, a species of noctural lizards endemic to Madagascar, use cryptic coloration to hide in tree bark during the daytime.

Mimic Octopus Camouflage

And last but not least, this GIF shows the amazing ability of the mimic octopus, which can imitate flora and fauna to evade predators.

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Thanks to imgur, Daily Mail, and Rant Lifestyle for some of the images above. We also recommend you check out this fascinating video by the BBC on the camouflage abilities of the cuttlefish:

Fascinated by animal camouflage? Check out our other posts on macro photography and the most astounding nature photography of 2014!

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