Who am I?
1. I am a mammal.
2. I belong to my own taxonomic order called Pholidota but I’m more closely related to Carnivores than other mammals.
3. I am bipedal (which means I walk on my two back legs).
4. I don’t have teeth so I have a very strong muscular stomach and sometimes I swallow sand to help grind my food.
5. I can extend my tongue nearly half a meter and it is very thin. It isn’t attached to a hyoid bone like most mammals but instead it extends into my thorax.
6. I spend a lot of time with my face in anthills and termite mounds so I have small eyes and my ears are basically just holes in my head.
7. Some people refer to me as myrmecophagous.
8. I am a very good digger and the claws on my hands are extremely tough.
9. I have a heavy tail that I use as an anchor when I dig.
10. I have hard scales that even a lion can’t bite through so I roll up in a ball when I feel threatened.
11. Like most other one-of-a-kind animals, I’m threatened by the animal trade because my scales are used in Chinese medicine and witchcraft. If only they knew that they could chew their fingernails for the same effect- my scales, just like rhino horn is just keratin like fingernails.