Mother Nature’s Drunken, Venomous Mistake: The Platypus

Nature's Poisons

Platypus by LongRoadPhotography (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) Platypus by LongRoadPhotography (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

The platypus, where to start? The Australian mammal (Ornithorhynchus anatinus) has the bill of a duck, a tail of a beaver, the waterproof body of an otter, and flat clawed webbed feet. Did I mention it lays eggs, yet lactates? It’s a freak show. Some say they are the Swiss Army Knife of animals and others will claim they are proof that Mother Nature has a sense of humor. As a scientist I’m a bit more pragmatic, and take the platypus as absolute proof that even Mother Nature will go to work drunk off her ass.

She eventually sobered up, and felt bad about what she created. So to atone for her transgression she gifted the poor platypus with venom. That’s right, the platypus is venomous. That ever-so-cute half duck, half beaver, half snake thing combines to make one and a half cans of whoop ass.

Platypus Spur by Stowe Boyd (CC BY-NC 2.0) Platypus Spur…

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