They say true beauty is on the inside, which means that there must be a whole world of kindness in the animal kingdom. For this installment, we’re going to look through mother nature’s finest and pick out ten of the downright ugliest creatures to ever walk the earth. These aren’t your run of the mill “it’s so ugly it’s cute” scenarios; these are the faces that broke the mold, the beasts that were hit with every branch of the famed ugly tree - these are the Top 10 Ugliest Animals.
The aptly named Blobfish is such an ugly creature that, to some degree, it looks completely fake. The fish receives its name from its gelatinous flesh, which has a density slightly less than water, a trait which allows it to float above the sea floor without having to utilize much energy. The blobfish, for lack of a better description, looks like an old deflated fat man that has simply given up on life. It’s black eyes, downturned mouth, and nose-like protrusion give it a saddened look – and with a mug like that, it’s tough not to be sad. This little critter does get a bad rap, though, for the creature is at its ugliest when pulled from its natural habitat. When observed alive and in water it, well… No, it actually is that ugly.
Take a good, close look at the Star-Nosed Mole and try to convince yourself afterwards that even its mother could love that face. The sad part is, moles aren’t generally an ugly animal. Sure, they’re a pain to anyone with a nice lawn, but they can be cute. The Star-Nosed Mole, though, completely changes the game. The odd-shaped nose at the end of its snout looks like a parasitic creature attached itself to the poor mole’s face, a look amplified by the fact that the organ is constantly moving. In actuality, the nose does serve a very practical purpose. The star-shaped nose is covered in minuscule touch receptors that helps the animal find prey in extremely low-light situations. Unfortunately, practicality doesn’t make it any less ugly.
It’s called a Sea Pig, so it must be adorable and cuddly, right? Absolutely wrong. This flabby underwater monstrosity is the absolute opposite of cute and cuddly. It’s downright terrifying to look at, clearly the product of Mother Nature playing way too much Half-Life. The near transparent exterior of this bottom-dweller is almost extraterrestrial in nature and the various appendages and tentacles are undoubtedly Kthulu-esque in nature. Despite its appearance, the Sea Pig, or the Scotoplane, is completely harmless, feasting on the carcasses of dead animals along the ocean floor. In fact, the Sea Pig has to fear humans more as, unsurprisingly, the Japanese have found a way to turn this opaque grotesque creation of nature into a delicacy.
If the SyFy channel is in need of a new epidemic to make a low-budget horror movie off of, our vote is for the Naked Mole-Rat. As the name would imply, this species of rodent is without any fur – and as we learned with the Sphinx Cat and Chinese Crested Hairless Dog, a lack of fur is not generally an attractive look for animals that, well, normally have it. In the case of the Naked mole-rat, it is a completely unfortunate sight for many, many reasons, the first of which being the scattered strands of hair that make this beast look like it just picks up lint as he skitters along. On top of its furless ugliness, the Naked mole-rat also has very small eyes, almost nonexistent looking, and if not for the four protruding teeth, it may be easy to mistake this creature as a dried-up chicken cutlet at first glance.
In the words of the great Ricky Ricardo, “Aye Yai Yai!” A horrible pun, we know, but there is really no other way to describe this Madagascar-based lemur. More than any primate, this tiny, nocturnal creature looks more akin to a common bat, with slender, clawed fingers, beady yellow eyes, and rounded ears atop its slightly elongated snout. The Aye-Aye and the Philippine Tarsier do share similar qualities of ugliness that coming across one late at night would probably illicit the same reaction. In the right lighting, the Aye-Aye may look cute, but once you stare at it long enough you’ll start to see things a bit clearly – especially if you catch a younger, more hairless Aye-Aye.
If you woke up one night and found this big-eyed primate staring down at you, you would probably start screaming nonsensically about gremlins in your bedroom – and rightfully so. The Philippine tarsier, or the mawmag, may only grow to be about 16 centimeters or 6.3 inches, but it’s actually the creature’s small size that attributes to its general hideous nature. The two large globes that are this tiny imps eyes seem like they could stare into your soul and find out all of your nasty little secrets. Luckily for many, as the name of this tiny ghoul would suggest, the primate is found only within the forests of the Philippines. They don’t do well in captivity, either – the unnatural conditions shaving anywhere from 2 to 12 years off of the normal 24-year lifespan.
Chinese Crested Hairless Dog
Like cats, not all breeds of dog are cute. Sure, there are those that you can’t help but feel a hint of adoration for, but some will make you wish you had a bar of soap for your eyes. To fill this role, we have the Chinese Crested Hairless Dog, which, ironically, has a haired counterpart this is quite snuggly and cute. This hairless breed, though, is exactly what you’d expect should you cross the Powderpuff variety with, say, David Spade’s Joe Dirt character. The breed is not entirely hairless, thanks to its stylish mullet and furry paws and tail. Rather than looking intentional, one look may make you wonder if the kids just went a little crazy on the family pet with daddy’s electric razor. Despite its name, the Chinese Crested is believed to have originated in Africa and was originally called the African Hairless Terrier.
The Proboscis Monkey can be found on the south-east Asian island of Borneo and should probably in the dictionary next to the word “Ugly.” This odd-looking primate is one of the largest species within Asia and is known best – and named for – the protruding nose on its already unattractive face. For most Proboscis Monkeys, their nose can grow beyond 10 centimeters or roughly 3.9 inches, nearly double the average size of the human nose. Females within the species don’t suffer from the same oversized facial feature, though their noses are still above the average size. As if the schnoz wasn’t enough, the Proboscis Monkey also has a permanent pot belly, making them look either constantly pregnant or bloated.
The Monkfish, or the Lophius, is found around the coast of Europe and the Cape of Good Hope. Its scarcity is a blessing, though, because this creature is not something you want to look at on a daily basis. From afar, this black mass of slimy skin looks like an isolated oil spill, until it opens its mouth to reveal a threatening looking set of teeth. Its distensible stomach, which give it that blubbery look, allows the beast to swallow prey as large as itself. Even more surprising is that people actually eat this hideous fish, partially putting into question the belief that we first eat with our eyes.
Cats are supposed to be cute, adorable little balls of fur that warm our hearts until they’re melted into a puddle on the floor; but that can’t be said about all breeds of feline. Looking a the Sphynx Cat, specifically, there is such a thing as an ugly cat. What make the Sphynx Cat so different from its fuzzy counterparts is the complete lack of fur, which really makes it look like the skin of a wrinkly old man. Even as a kitten, the Sphynx Cat looks a little “off,” some would say. While it may appear as if the Sphynx Cat was created in some lab, and though that is partially true, the breed is actually a descendent of two lines of natural mutations that took place in Minnesota and Canada.