The Hoatzin Bird
Animals and plants can be amazing, but some can also be disgusting.
The Hoatzin bird builds its nest above the water of the river. This enables the chicks to simply hop into the water and swim to safety if the nest is attacked. The chicks also have small claws on its wings to help it grip and climb trees.
But here is the gross part: the leaves that the Hoatzin eats are fermented in its throat. This gives the bird awful breath! This is why the people in northern South America call it the Stink bird and no one hunts this animal. The same thing happens in a cow’s stomach. This is why the Hoatzin smells like cow manure.
The Rafflesia Flower
Some plants are revolting too.
The Rafflesia flower, or corpse flower, literally smells like rotting meat. It is often larger than 3 feet wide and can weigh more than 200 pounds! The awful smell it puts off helps attract flies and beetles which will help pollinate the flower. Also this plant has no stem, leaves or even roots!
It is named after Sir Stamford Raffles the leader of the expedition on which it was first recorded and grows naturally in Indonesia.
by Judah L.
Sources I used:
- Amazing Birds: Fact Files by Miles Kelly
- How Does a Seed Sprout? by Stewart & Schwartz
- Boys’ Life Magazine, October 2018
- Wikipedia: Rafflesia flower