Aardvark vs Anteater
Aardvark and Anteater are two different type animals, but often confused by many due to their similar appearances and ecological niches. Therefore, it would be interesting to understand the distinction between them. This article intends to explore their characteristics and emphasize the differences between them.
Aardvark is a medium sized burrowing nocturnal mammal, living in the savannah grasslands of Africa. Aardvark is the only surviving member of the Order: Tubulidentata. They have a distinct appearance with a pig-like but long snout, which is adapted for digging and protruding it through burrows. They have a stout body, which has a characteristically arched back. In addition, coarse hairs cover their body. Usually, a healthy adult could weigh about 40 – 65 kilograms and have a body length varying from 100 – 130 centimetres. The front legs of an aardvark have only four toes without thumbs, but hind feet have all five toes. They have shovel-like large nails covering the each toe, as adaptations to dig the ground. Their ears are very long (almost disproportionate), and the tail is very thick but gradually tapers towards the tip. They have an elongated head that gives them a distinctive appearance, but their thick neck and the disc-like structures at the end of snout are unique too. One of the most important features of aardvark is the presence of their extra long and thin snake-like tongue, which well suits to their tubular mouth. All those features are adaptations to their specialized feeding habits, as aardvarks feed on ants and termites. They would know the presence of any predator with the use of their very strong sense of smell.
Anteaters, aka Ant bears, are mammals belong to the Order: Pilosa and specifically in the Suborder: Vermilingua. There are four species of anteaters, and the name is given because they like to eat especially ants and termites. Usually, a healthy animal exceeds two meters of body length without the tail, and the height to the shoulders is about 1.2 meters. Anteaters have a long thin head and a large bushy tail those give them a characteristic appearance. They also have long and sharp nails, so that they can open insect colonies and tree trunks. Anteaters do not have teeth, but they use their extra long and sticky tongue to collect ants and other insects. The thick saliva is of great importance to make their tongues sticky. They are solitary but not burrowing animals. When they sleep, they cover their body by the busy tail. These specialized animals live in North and South America.
What is the difference between Aardvark and Anteater?
• Aardvark is one particular species, whereas there are four different species of anteaters.
• Aardvarks have teeth in their mouths but not in mouths of anteaters.
• Anteater has a long bushy tail, whereas aardvark has a thick and tapering tail.
• An anteater is almost two times larger than an aardvark.
• Aardvarks are native to Africa, but anteaters live in Americas.
• Anteaters have a longer snout compared to the one in aardvarks.