Cryptically-Colored Critters Adapt to Survive

Camouflage Helps Animals Protect and Feed Themselves

Unfortunately, animals are unable to call 911 when they are in danger. However, many species are able to protect themselves in a different way—through camouflage. Animals practice camouflage, the ability to look like their surroundings, by changing their color or by having a skin pattern that looks like the environment around them.

Camouflage is not just for animals on land. In fact, some aquatic creatures, like the wobbegong shark who blends into ocean floors and coral reefs, are capable of this phenomena too. When threatened by predators, these creatures can change their appearance or move to areas where their bodies blend into their background.

Other animals use camouflage not only for protection but also to feed themselves. Snakes and weasels, for example, use this technique to prey on and capture other species.

Camouflage is also called cryptic coloring. Geckos are known for their cryptic colors and so are some shrimp, who have see-through bodies! A specific type of camouflage that some animals practice is mimicry, which means they take on the appearance of something to themselves. For instance, the walking stick insect looks like a twig but is actually a bug.

Camouflage may seem common, but it is truly an amazing skill. Imagine what you could accomplish if you were able to blend into your surroundings!

[Source: Camouflaged and Disguise]

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