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Quiz: General Animal Knowledge

The wonders and oddities of the animal kingdom are almost endless. Some facts are well-known, while others seem almost obscure. This quiz is about animals in general and it is meant to make you think about the animals we share this planet with. This all qualifies as trivia and hopefully, it will be a fun exercise. If so, you’ll honestly be able to say that exercising is fun.

Note that with the True or False questions, if any part of the question is false, the answer is false.

  • This creature is responsible for more human deaths than any other:

    • Great White Sharks
    • Spitting Cobras
    • Mosquitoes
  • This fish has been recorded swimming at 82 mph, making it the world’s fastest fish:

    • Black Marlin
    • Chinook Salmon
    • Small Mouth Bass
  • This insect can jump about 110 times its own length; the equivalent of a man six feet tall jumping a distance of 660 feet (220 yards) – farther than two football fields:

    • Common Flea
    • Long-horned Grasshopper
    • Southern Pine Beetle
  • True or False: Inch for inch, a spider’s web silk is stronger than high-test steel.

    • True
    • False
  • True or False: The main predator for the roadrunner is the coyote.

    • True
    • False
  • True or False: A capybara, the world’s largest rodent, can weigh up to 175 pounds.

    • True
    • False
  • True or False: The creature in this image is responsible for more deaths in Australia than great white sharks:

    • True
    • False
  • Which of these two animals is responsible for more deaths in the US each year?

    • Honey bee
    • Rattlesnake
  • True or False: The little critter in the image isn’t a rodent, but it must eat continually. If it goes a few hours without eating, it will starve to death.

    • True
    • False
  • True or False: The common starling, pictured here, is native to America and numbers about 150 million.

    • True
    • False

What do you think?

17 points

Written by Rex Trulove

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  1. “49 people have died from snake bite in the US since 1900.” – now that is an eye-opener, considering the huge part snakes play in the public perception. I just got the last one wrong (though the test didn’t calculate). Unlike John (Indexer) I didn’t see that having starlings native to these islands precluded them also being native to America. But now I know 🙂

    • Yes, a person could easily think that the number of people dying from snake bite would be far higher than it is. Many people are terrified of snakes. Still, rattlesnakes have a limited amount of venom and they use it to kill their prey, usually rodents, so striking at a person or large herbivore could mean that they’ll go hungry and could potentially die of starvation. I’ve seen rattlesnakes ‘bluff-strike’, though. It looks like they are striking, but they are really trying to scare away a potential threat. Bites are actually rare. I live in rattlesnake country, yet in the time I’ve been here, I haven’t heard of a single person being bitten here.

      As for starlings, that was a disastrous blunder. They were imported without a thought to the fact that there are no natural predators. They were prosperous and only now has the population stabilized…at around 150 million. They are found in nearly every state and the southern Canadian provinces. Every place I’ve lived in Oregon and here in Montana has had a large number of starlings. In those places, quite a few native birds have become rare, from being displaced by the starlings.

  2. 9/10 – I only went wrong with the fast fish! I would have been very cross if you’d said that the starling was native to the US, seeing how many we get in our garden in the UK! Mind you, you have a bird that you call the robin that isn’t a robin – it’s a thrush – so I wouldn’t put it past you to steal the starling as well!

    • LOL…well, you got that. Starlings were imported in 1890, and there were over 100 million of them by the time they’d been here for a century. They cause millions of dollars in crop damage each year, though they also eat lots of insect pests.

      As for the American robin, it was most likely named by European settlers who were having a hard time coping with a whole new set of fauna than what they were used to. I suspect that there was a little homesickness going on. lol

    • That isn’t bad. As for the bee, the key is actually the rattlesnake. Only 49 people have died from snake bite in the US since 1900. :)) Even if only one person died per year from bee sting, bees would still be deadlier.

    • Honey bees in general. A LOT of people are allergic to the stings. The venom from Africanized bees isn’t any more potent than that from European or American honey bees. They are just much more aggressive, so people seldom get a single sting from Africanized bees. It also isn’t the venom that usually kills, it is the allergic reaction to the venom. Still, 50-100 Americans die each year from bee stings (depending on the source used). In contrast, 49 people have died from snake bite in the US since 1900.

      Here is a bit of trivia for you, though: More people are crushed to death by furniture and TV’s every year in the US than the number of people who die from even bee stings. (Roughly 350 deaths per year from being crushed by furniture.)

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