People see the barren wasteland of the desert and imagine that it’s full of lizards and animals that spend their time hidden away underground in the dark. But that’s not true. While there’s lots of animals that have developed very utilitarian features, that doesn’t mean they don’t turn out adorable. Here are some of the most adorable and fantastic desert creatures.
These adorable cousins to house cats are becoming more rare in the deserts thanks to competition with domesticated animals for food and territory. However that doesn’t stop them from being absolutely adorable. Sand Cats have extra large ears which they use to help pick up sounds of possible prey underground. They also have extra fur on their paws. This fur helps insulate their paws from the scorching desert sand that they trod upon. The sand cat actually retains extra water like a camel so that it can spend more time hunting and less time staying close to water.
Meerkats live together in large groups. Meerkats are extra adorable because they are consistently standing up using their hind legs and tails. This lets them scan for predators who might come to ruin their fun. Meerkat clans work on the alpha couple system. The only mating is allowed between the alpha male and alpha female. Outsider babies are often killed off to try and protect the babies of the alpha couple. It’s an interesting dynamic. While it’s sad what happens to the poor babies, the family hierarchy is very strong and has worked for meerkats up to this point.
One of the collection of animals whose name is entirely misleading. The kangaroo rat is not a kangaroo. The kangaroo rat isn’t even a rat. What it is, it’s one of the cutest rodents that’s ever existed. The kangaroo rats live in arid open habitats. Not necessarily the hottest deserts, but a lot of the same conditions still apply. Climate change is starting to affect these adorable rodents and they are slowly seeing their population decrease. While they aren’t endangered yet, their population is certainly dropping.
Let’s be honest. Small animals are often cuter than their larger counterparts. The Fennec Fox is the perfect example of smaller is cuter. The fennec fox is the very smallest of the canids. However it has some big features. The fennec fox has an absolutely gigantic set of ears. This lets them detect prey underground. The fur on the fox is purpose made for the desert. It keeps heat in during the night, but during the sun, it actually reflects the sun and keeps those adorable little guys nice and cool.
There’s a lot of cute gazelle out there. The way they leap through the air while in the long grass is bloody adorable. The springbok is one of the cutest. Their little wraparound horns are small enough that they don’t look intimidating or threatening. The other aspect to the Springbok that’s tough to deal with is the giant doe eyes they have. Those large eyes are the same thing that make puppies so irresistibly adorable. It’s a defense mechanism to make predators hesitate to snuff out something so cute.