Bush dogs first became known from fossilized remains discovered in a Brazilian cave, rather than from a living animal. Their small size makes them hard to observe, particularly in rainforest areas, where there are numerous hiding places.
The 9 species of galagos, or bushbabies are found only in Africa. All species are arboreal. They have long limbs and tails and are excellent leapers. The bushbaby, or lesser galago, has the widest distribution of any species of African prosimian.
Bushbucks live across Central Africa south of the Sahara Desert to the north of the Kalahari Desert. They are not found in the rainforest of the Congo but live in most other open habitats that have enough cover. They are browsers, picking leaves and fruits.
These pinnipeds are quite often seen in harbours and similar areas close to human activity, although now they only breed on offshore islands. California sea lions spend the year moving up and down the Pacific cpast of North America.
The 4 surviving species in this formerly more diverse family are the most primitive of the ruminants, or cud-chewing animals. Of the 4, dromedaries and most of the Bactrian camels are wholly domesticated. There are still wild Bactrians in the Gobi Desert.
Capuchin monkeys are not only found in forests but also in coastal areas, where they live in mangroves and forage in the mud at low tide. The white-faced, or white-throated, capuchin ranges from Honduras in Central America and south to the Pacific coast of Colombia.
The black tufts of hair on the ears of these wild cats explain their name, which is derived from the Turkish word karakulak. Caracals are remarkably agile, even for cats. They can jump vertically to catch small birds.
The domestic cat is now a popular pet around the world. Aside from companionship, cats are also valued as a means of curbing rodent populations. Domestication of the cat began around 9500 years ago. All domestic bloodlines descended from African wild cat stock.
These agile mountain goats used to be extensively hunted for their hides, which were manufactured into chamois leather used for polishing cars and glass. There are two distinct species of chamois, both found in mountainous areas of Europe.
The fastest land mammal on earth, the cheetah is able to sprint at speeds of up to 120 kph (75 mph) over short distances when pursuing prey. The cheetah has specialized muscles that provide amazing acceleration.