Pangolin

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Pangolins
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Infraclass: Eutheria
Superorder: Laurasiatheria
Order: Pholidota
Weber, 1904
Family: Manidae
Gray, 1821
Genus: Manis
Linnaeus, 1758

Pangolins (or scaly anteaters) are mammals which live in Africa and Asia. They have scales on their skin. There are different types of pangolin. Some types live in trees. All pangolins eat ants and termites. They catch their food using their tongues. Pangolins curl up when they feel scared so that their soft belly is hidden from attack. In southern China and other countries people kill pangolins to eat them. Because of this, there are not many pangolins left in some places. There are seven species of pangolin, 4 of which live in Africa and 3 of which live in Asia. The ones that live in Africa are the cape pangolin, tree pangolin, and giant pangolin, and the three that live in Asia are the Indian pangolin, Malaysian pangolin, and Chinese pangolin. The pangolin ranges in color from gray to golden brown, and its scales (that are made of keratin) take more part in a color range between tan and golden brown. A pangolin's scales are attached to muscles under the skin, and can be moved to point towards predators. Hair grows between the scales and near the rear of the animal. Although a pangolin has features of armadillos (long, ant eating tongue and broad tail) and sloths (claws) the pangolin comes in a completely different order from their order (Xenartha) the pangolin actually belongs to the order Pholidota. A pangolin's main predators are wild cats and hyenas, that, and humans. Pangolins are primarily hunted for their meat and scales (which seem to have a medicinal value) Pangolins eat ants and termites. They cannot eat anything else. A mother pangolins gestation period is between 120 to 180 days. Young pangolin are born with scales, and they harden by the second day the pangling is out of the womb.

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