Remember when your beloved pooch decided that it was time to pass a little gas while sitting on the couch? Well, believe it or not, Fido has nothing on these 10 other animals that roam free on our planet.
When I was a kid, my mother never let us eat beef very often, claiming it would give us body odor. I could never see the point.
Driving past a pasture filled with cows, maybe my mother was on to something. A cow can produce between 250 to 500 liters of methane gas per day - quite a lot of flatulence.
Also, a study by the UN calls cattle responsible for 18% of greenhouse gases - that's more than cars, planes and all other forms of transport put together. Methane is also 20 times more effective as a global warmer as CO2. Ouch.
#9: MillipedeCredit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Marshman
Didn't expect to see a millipede on the list? In all fairness, they are fairly docile critters that don't bite or sting.
However, certain species of millipedes have secret chemical weapons. Some have stink glands (also known as ozopores) that release a foul-smelling and tasting chemical in order to repel predators. This is a volatile, poisonous substance that is potent enough to cause human skin to blister. Kids, please always wash your hands after holding millepedes!
#8: Stink Bug
Stink bug is a common name for a family of insects made up of thousands of species found in different parts of the world. As the name itself suggests, the stink bug is known to release a very unpleasant smell in an attempt to repel potential predators. This foul-smelling liquid comes from two glands on the bug's thorax. Once released, the odor remains on whatever the stinkbug comes into contact with.
Apparently, a stinkbug tastes as bad as it smells. Many birds spit out stinkbugs right after biting into them. However, other birds don’t seem to mind.
Ironically, the same chemical is used by male stink bugs to attract a mate. Well, as the saying goes, different strokes for different folks and the same goes with bugs.
#7: Bombardier BeetleCredit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/22616984@N07/
The Bombardier beetle is a ground beetle (Carabidae) that got its name from the mixture of chemicals it can fire from the rear. This is a toxic, foul-smelling and boiling liquid that makes a loud popping sound when released and could cause serious woe for whatever it hits.
#6: Musk OxCredit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/37467370@N08/7612074866/
Smelly though this animal may be, the 'musk' of the Musk Ox comes only from the males during mating season, whereby males produce an extremely "musky" odor from a pair of orbital glands on their faces.
During mating season, male musk oxen are particularly aggressive and mark their territory with urine. A lot of this smelly urine gets matted into the fur of the animals during this time, which generally leaves the Musk Ox smelling pretty bad.
#5: WolverineCredit: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Wolverine_on_rock.jpg
Unlike the X-Men character, real wolverines are shy creatures frequently smelled rather than seen. Like most members of the weasel family, wolverines have special glands that secrete fluid for territory marking. Although their bodies are fairly smelly, it is the musky scent of this fluid that really packs a punch. Wolverines might actually spray their leftover food and bury it so they can eat it later – not that anyone else would want those foul-smelling leftovers!
Surprised that this wasn't number one on the list?
All species of skunk have the ability to spray a foul-smelling chemical when threatened. This famous skunk spray is a mix of seven different organic compounds that are sulfur based and hence the reason why skunk spray smells like rotten eggs. Skunks can spray accurately up to 15 feet and the stench is so powerful that almost every animal leaves it alone.
What to do when your Dog gets Sprayed by a Skunk
If your dog gets sprayed by a skunk, a tomato juice bath does not work! All you will get is a dog which smelling of tomato and skunk soup i.e. even worse. Skunk-off Liquid Soaker is the only product some dog owners say actually works. It acts on a molecular level to neutralize the mercaptan (the skunk odor molecule), which leaves your dog smelling somewhat like upholstery - not a bad trade-off at all. Other dog owners swear by Nature's Miracle Skunk Odor Remover but because this is an enzyme-based liquid remover and skunk juice is not bacteria driven, Skunk-off is probably a much better deal.
#3: Tasmanian devilCredit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/andy_bernay-roman/3380560835/
While Bugs Bunny never seemed bothered by the smell of Taz, this creature's stench is legendary in real life.
To be fair, the Tasmanian devil is a shy and solitary animal. However, these aggressive creatures emit a foul odor when they get stressed out, pretty much every time they encounter a human - in order to protect their environment. Some say this odor is never to be forgotten, others say it rivals that of a skunk's and some have even gone so far as to call it the stench of death.
#2: Lesser anteater
Introducing number 2: the Lesser anteater, also known as Tamandua. Named because of its small stature in comparison to their relatives, the Giant anteater, the lesser anteater has been regarded one of the most foul smelling creatures in the animal kingdom.
When threatened, lesser anteaters release a foul-smelling secretion much like a skunk, which helps drive away predators. This foul, toxic perfume odor can be detected up to 160 feet away amd is four to seven times smellier than the skunk's. No wonder it works well at persuading potential predators looking for a quick snack to go elsewhere.
#1: Striped polecatCredit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/payayita/3255905969/
The striped polecat, also known as the zorilla, wins the top prize for top smelliest animal on the planet. A skunk-like member of the weasel family, it uses a foul-smelling spray to deter predators (much like the skunk). Its anal glands can be smelled from half a mile away - that's more than seven football fields. No wonder it beats all the other animals for the number one spot!
Despite the low-down on the stinky, skunks are favourite pets for some people. With their soft fur and ability to be house-trained, they are the latest must-have furry friend in some parts of the world. Personally, I'd take a plushie over this heavenly-scented pet.
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