Top 10 MOST SHOCKING Animal Mutations
Sometimes we feel like we’ve seen it all, that our eyes can fall on nothing stranger than what we’ve seen during our time on this planet. Then we happen upon a suggestion for this installment, the top 10 most shocking animal mutations and, through our research, find oddities of nature that prove that we’ve only scratched the service of what's out there.
The deep blue is home to plenty of strange and unique aquatic life, but it may be hard to beat an octopus that sports 96 different tentacles. The 7-pound or 3.3-kilogram, 3-foot or about 1-meter long creature was discovered in Matoya Bay in December of 1998 and has been on display at the Shima Marineland Aquarium in Shima, Japan even after its death that occurred only 5 months after capture. The specimen, which looks to sport a system of tree roots when splayed out on display, isn’t the only multi-tentacled octopus, as the Toba Aquarium in Toba, Japan once sported a specimen with 85 tentacles.
On a Croatian farm in 2014, Zoran Papric welcomed into his brood a very unusual goat. Along with two healthy siblings, the tiny goat was born with four extra limbs which were attributed to an underdeveloped twin. Dubbed “octogoat,” the tiny critter also sported the reproductive organs of a male and female and, according to veterinarians that looked it over, was not expected to live past the first week. With no further updates online about the mutant kid, we’re only left to assume the eight-legged wonder survived that initial week of life.
No, it’s not some strange hybrid of a pig and a monkey, though it’s facial features may give it the appearance of such a genetic melding. The monkey pig is actually a piglet in Guizhou Province, China that was born with a severe facial deformity. Out of a litter of 15, the tiny pig-monkey was the only one to sport the striking facial features. Marred by an overbite, the small piglet was unable to feed itself upon birth. The monkey pig is far from the first piglet to be born with facial deformities as prior mutations have produced bizarre growths and human facial features and multi-headed specimens.
The Winged Cat
As far back as ancient Egypt, depictions of winged cats have been reported. Though one could easily misinterpret these as some mythical beast, the truth behind the winged cat may be rooted deeper in science than mythology. Sightings of cats with “wings” are not entirely uncommon, especially since it can be a simple case of matted hair or loose skin. A third and far less common reason, however, can come from the formation of supernumerary limbs such as vestigial legs. In some instances, these limbs were believed to be the product of conjoined twins.
If you took one look at this dusky shark and called out “Fake,” you’re certainly not alone. That was our reaction when we first came across it, but as we soon found out, it’s far from a farce. With questions of its validity circling around the discovery of the cyclops shark, scientists from the Interdisciplinary Center of Marine Sciences in La Pax, Mexico studied the strange-looking specimen to find that the 22-inch or roughly 55-centimeter, one-eyed fetus is real. The tiny shark was pulled from a group of ten newborns after fisherman Enrique Lucero Leon caught a pregnant dusky shark near Cerralvo Island in the Gulf of California.
The Three-Headed Frog
In 2004, the Green Umbrella nursery in Weston-super-Mare, England got its hand on a rare specimen before accidentally letting it loose back into the wild. The creature in question was a three-headed, six-legged frog that survived its unusual mutation long enough to be snagged by the nursery and once again lost to the wild. Initially believed to be a trio of frogs huddled together in a manner similar to a mating behavior called multiple amplexus, Laura Pepper from the Green Umbrella nursery alleges that it was indeed three frogs fused into one. While the frog is a marvel, some fear it may also be an early warning of detrimental environmental problems.
Though it may look like a monstrosity pulled from Greek mythology, the cyclops kitten, nicknamed Cy, was a real oddity of nature. The small kitten suffered from holoprosencephaly, a condition known to cause facial deformities and, in Cy’s case, a single eye had formed where its nose would normally be. Born on December 28th, 2006, the cyclops kitten was cared for by its owner, Traci Allen, until it died the next day. Another instance occurred in 2012 with the birth of Cleyed the Cyclops, who passed away shortly after birth from suffocation.
The Footed Snake
Throw everything you may know about the physical appearance of snakes away – this extremely rare discovery in China will change it all. In the middle of a September night in 2009, China local Duan Qiongxiu found an unusual specimen of snake creeping around her house. The creature, this one-footed, 16-inch or roughly 40-centimeter snake, was moving along Duan’s walls using an unusual appendage: a claw. Frightened by the monstrosity in her room, the homeowner beat the snake to death, tossed the body in alcohol, and presented it to the Life Sciences Department at China’s West Normal University in Nanchang. While the university was unable to comment on the origin of the snake without an autopsy, no findings have ever been made public, leaving us to wonder where this legged Ophidia came from.
Albino Spotless Giraffe
Albino animals are a rarity in the wild, but we’ve seen enough of them over time that their appearance isn’t quite what you’d call shocking. That is, of course, until you lay your eyes upon this long-necked beauty. Without its telltale spots, the albino giraffe looks like a strange creature alien to the species we’re familiar with, maybe even resembling a hybrid between a stallion and the tall-necked mammal. The spotless, albino giraffe was located in Kenya in 2016 living amongst a herd of 19 other normal giraffes that seemed to pay no mind to the strange color alteration of their kin.
While the Squitten may sound like a genetic experiment gone wrong, its existence has nothing to do with failed modification. Afflicted with Radia hypoplasia, which is thought to be a side effect of natural inbreeding, the tiny squitten is forced to stand on its hind legs as it is born with no bones below the elbow joint on their front legs. Another known cause for the squirrel-like stance includes foreleg micromelia, or the development of abnormally small forelegs. Along with being forced to sit in a matter that makes it look like a squirrel-kitten hybrid, other malformations that may occur have included extra front toes.