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The Star Nosed Mole
Transcript of The Star Nosed Mole
by Esmé Conkright and Maddie Eyre
The star nosed mole, scientifically known as the condylura crisata, is a small mammal that lives in eastern Canada, northeastern United States, along the Atlantic coast and even as far south as Georgia. They can be found in tunnels with damp soil. They live where it is warm, humid, and has lots of rain. They eat fish, insects, and worms. You can tell if you see a star nosed mole because they are small in size and have a nose that resembles a star.
Their feet are shaped like shovels. Their front feet are larger than their back feet and are big compared to their body size. Their unique size and shape allows them to dig their tunnels faster, and helps them swim/paddle.
The star nosed mole has adapted to its environment through its eyes. Their eyes have developed poor eyesight. Their eyes are small lessen the chances of them getting filled with soil.
Their noses are their most identifying feature. Their noses have 22 retractable tentacles in a ring formation. The tentacles contain more than 25,000 receptive organs that pick up the electric impulses given off by their prey. This is how they locate their food. Their noses also allow them to smell underwater.
Their fur is thick and can withstand the water when they go underwater to search for prey. Their fur also dries quickly.
Burrowing is a behavioral adaptation. They burrow to get away from predators and find food. Their tunnels run underground, near water. The moles can find prey using their noses. They have tunnels with an exit below the surface of the water and spend a lot of time swimming around, searching for prey. They burrow to hide from predators and find food.
Star nosed moles prefer to live together in colonies. They may like to live together, but it is still a mystery how they communicate .While they are traveling through their tunnels, their nose tentacles cover their nostrils to protect them from dirt entering their noses. Since they are semi-aquatic, they burrow near water.
Contrary to popular belief, star nosed moles do not hibernate. They have a high metabolic rate so they don't have to. This is a physiological adaptation.
-Because of specialized bone and muscle construction, moles can exert a lateral digging force equivalent to 32 times its body weight.
-A 5 ounce mole will consume 45 to 50 lbs. of worms and insects per year.
- They can dig at a speed of about 18 feet per hour.
-Moles contain twice as much blood and twice as much red hemoglobin as other mammals of similar size, allowing the mole to breath easily in its underground environment of low oxygen and high carbon dioxide.
Their tails swell with fat three to four times its normal size during the winter to help keep it warm.
A star nosed mole trying to find some food in one of its tunnels.