Friday, August 31, 2012

Velociraptor Skeleton Model

Fantasticly detailed, fun, and educational!

Our Velociraptor Skeleton Model

This realistic-looking velociraptor skeleton model is made of strong plastic and is sturdy when assembled. It is 9 1/2 inches long and 6 1/2 inches tall. There are about 10 separate pieces, some large, with easy to follow assembly instructions and a diagram. The bones look weathered and connect with one another through pegs or joint sockets. Although most pieces hold together well, it may help to use a little super glue. This miniature velociraptor skeleton replica makes a nice display, a gift, or toy for children or adults and could work well for school show-and-tell or as a school science project. Check out our other dinosaur model toys and gifts.

About the Velociraptors

The velociraptor, or "speedy raider," lived in the Cretaceous period in what is now Mongolia. It was a two-legged, feathered carnivore with a long, stiffened tail and an enlarged sickle-shaped claw on each hindfoot, which is thought to have been used to kill its prey. The velociraptor was popularized in the movie Jurassic Park, but it was made much larger and without feathers. The velociraptor was really only the size of a turkey, but nontheless ferocious.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Lobster and Shrimp Pins

One of our many highly-detailed and stylish animal pins!

Our Painted Lobster and Shrimp Pins

These gorgeous and unusual lobster and shrimp pins are made in Washington and Idaho by a team of U.S. artists. The high-quality lapel pins or oversized tie tacks are unique. They are exquisitely detailed; the quality of the painting elevates each pin to an item of wearable art. Each one is cast in pewter and painted by hand. You will be delighted with the professional quality and artistic details of your piece of fish jewelry. The finish is extremely smooth and shiny, as you can see by the highlight from the scanner. It is also extremely durable. The pin is secured by two sturdy tacks on the back so it stays upright, and the finished product is not only gorgeous, but satisfyingly substantial in weight. It can be used as a lapel pin, hat pin, tie tack, and more. These collectible animal pins are heirloom quality, and the details are so realistic, they are found in museum gift shops and bought by organizations in need of the perfect animal to represent their group.

About Lobsters and Shrimp

For all their bug-like appearance, lobster and shrimp represent some of the most sought-after seafoods, both by humans and large marine animals.

Clawed lobster fossils date back until at least the Cretaceous period, over 65 million years ago. Although their appearance is similar to scorpions, lobsters are not arachnids…they are arthropods, with ten legs total (the first three sets have claws, and the first of these are much bigger than the others). Lobsters are amongst the very few animals that show no detrimental effects of aging, continuing to grow and increase in fertility until an outside force (disease, predation, injury) causes death. Generally, lobsters are less than 20 inches long. The largest lobster was caught in Canada and weighed over 44 pounds.

Lobsters live in all oceans and may live as deep as 2000 fathoms, or 3700 meters. They are omnivores, preferring live fish, crustaceans and some plant life. In the wild lobsters have been known to scavenge, and have resorted to cannibalism in captivity where all other food sources are absent.

Lobster is an extremely popular and sought-after food. All commercial lobster are caught wild. While attempts to domesticate and farm lobster continue, none have been commercially successful. Lobster's commercial popularity is relatively new, however. Prior to the mid-19th century in North America, lobster was considered a second-rate cuisine, fit only for the lowest members of society. Servants would specify that they "would not eat lobster more than twice a week" in their employment agreements. Well into the 20th century, lobster was used as fertilizer, fish bait, and a low-priced canned staple item, similar to tuna today.

Many different, unrelated forms of crustacean fall under the heading of “shrimp”. Most shrimp require a marine environment to grow and reproduce…a very few species can tolerate freshwater environments. Shrimp can collect in schools or survive independently, and form the basic food source for many marine predators. Like lobster, shrimp walk very slowly, but swim (backwards) very quickly by snapping their tail. Unlike lobster, shrimp have been successfully farmed for human consumption since the 1970s, with almost a third of the world’s commercial shrimp supplied by farming.

While the word "prawn" tends to be used in North America to describe any big shrimp, there are biological differences between true shrimp and true prawns. Biologists can distinguish between the two by their gill structure, but an easy way to tell is to examine the segments that form the shrimp’s abdomen. On a shrimp, the second segment overlaps both the first and third segments. On a prawn, it overlaps only the first.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012


A fantastic addition to your oceanographic diorama!

Our Coral Replica

This engaging, realistic-looking plastic coral is made of solid, flexible plastic. The body has well-defined detail. It is 2 1/2 inches tall. It represents three different types of coral, staghorn, brain and rock coral. This adds color to a sealife school project or fits in a diorama. Check out our other sealife toys and gifts.

About Corals

Corals are marine organisms from the class Anthozoa and exist as small sea anemone-like polyps, typically in colonies of many identical individuals. The group includes the important reef builders that are found in tropical oceans, which secrete calcium carbonate to form a hard skeleton. Corals can eat by stinging and capturing small fish or obtain nutrients from algae. They make up shallow reefs especially off of Australia and Hawaii.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Whale Shark

One of few sharks you DON'T need to keep your eye on!!!

Our Whale Shark

Our whale shark toy animal is made of hard plastic and measures 3 1/8 inches. Its name is moulded into the underside. This plastic shark is great for school projects, toys, novelties, animal collections, party favors and more. You can make a clever creatures of the sea shoebox diorama using this and other plastic aquatic creatures and mammals, sharks, fish, sea turtles, and birds from our gift shop. Best of all, there is no mess, no feeding, and no tank or cage cleaning :) Come see our wonderful assortment of plastic sharks.

About Whale Sharks

The words "whale shark" call to mind images of a huge, ferocious beast preying on whales, but nothing could be further from the truth. This solitary, slow moving creature's name refers to it's size. At up to 50 feet and 16 tons, the whale shark (Rhincodon typus) is not only the largest shark but also the largest fish in the world. The trademark wide mouth opens amazingly wide to scoop up plankton, small squid, small fish and krill. Check out the photos at Extreme Science. Because of its quiet, gentle nature, it has become a favorite among divers. It seems to pay no attention at all when divers touch or climb on it. The whale shark can be found in tropical waters world wide.

 This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Beaver Replica

He's back at TPF, and ready to star in your woodland diorama!

Our Plastic Beaver Replica

This busy beaver is one of our series of lively and lifelike plastic animals. Its realistic shape and details will be enjoyed as part of a school project, diorama, plastic animal collection, as a party favor, or gift.

About Beavers

Beavers are wonderful swimmers and also great at building dams. The dams they build are mostly used to get easy access to food in the winter time, and are also used for protection againt predators. The dams may be as large as 1,000 ft long, 15 ft high, and 25 ft thick. Not to mention the beaver is also large, a male can weigh up to 55 lbs, and a female beaver can weigh even more! The beaver is so large, that they are the 2nd largest rodent in the world next to the capybara (see stuffed and plastic capybaras in our gift shop).

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Algae Plush Replica

What a lovable and sweet band of little puffballs!

Our Blue-Green Algae

This strange-looking stuffed blue-green algae is an unusual replica. It is 7 1/2 inches long, is made of green and tan synthetic fur, has large eyes, and wears a sympathetic expression. If you aren't an algae lover, you will be after you own these adorable little fellas. I am not sure you'll want to put it in your tub though! This plush blue-green algae toy makes a nice pet, a gift, toy or gag and could work well for a school play or show-and-tell as a school science project. Or maybe you have a biologist friend or teacher who needs an unusual gift! Check out our other aquatic plant toys and gifts.

About Blue-Green Algae

Blue-green algae is a parasitic cyanobacteria, also known as anabaena. It appears as a blue-green scum on water but can also be found on moist ground. It is a significant component of the nitrogen cycle and obtains its energy through photosynthesis. Blue-green algae can be alone or form huge colonies. The association of toxicity with such blooms has frequently led to the closure of recreational waters when blooms are observed.

The Tag on Our Algae Says:

FACTS: Much of the muck you see in slimy green water is composed of blue-green algae! (Blue-green algae is the common name for cyanobacteria.)

Cyanobacteria are found worldwide and in many different habitats. They grow in fish tanks and swimming pools, as well as innumerable marine and freshwater environments. They are also found in soil, houseplants, and as symbiotes in animals and plant-life. They can be solitary or colonial and can form large mats and filaments visible to the human eye.

Cyanobacteria are not related to any of the other algal groups; they are actually bacteria that photosynthesize.

Anabaena is a type of blue-green algae that likes to form filamentous colonies of green slime. They smell bad, taste worse, and can cause nausea if ingested. (Prolonged exposure can also cause skin irritation.)
Blue-green algae like light and warm stagnant water, so improving water circulation helps to control their numbers. Live plants can also reduce algae populations by providing shade and competition for nutrients. Certain animals, such as tadpoles and algae-eating fish, can disrupt algal communities. And where ecological sensitivity is not required (e.g., in swimming pools) chlorine and algicides provide definitive and categorical results.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Holstein Cow

You can collect a whole family of Holsteins at TPF!!

Our Plastic Holstein Cow

This realistic-looking plastic Holstein cow is made of hard plastic and is constructed with attention to detail. It is 5 inches long and 2 3/4 inches tall. This Holstein cow makes a nice pet, a gift, fits into a cow collection, or is useful for a diorama. Our plastic cow can be used in a number of ways including as a gift indicating a bride price among certain cultures, and as a part of a Christmas manger scene. Check out our other cow toys and gifts.

About Holstein Cows

The Holstein cow is a popular dairy cow which originated in what is today Holland. The Dutch breeders bred and oversaw the development of the breed with the aim of obtaining animals which would make best use of grass. The result was an efficient, high-producing black-and-white dairy cow. It is black and white due to artificial selection by the breeders. It is the most common dairy cow in America.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Digger Bee Replica

A unique figurine and wonderful toy!

Our Digger Bee Miniature

This engaging, realistic-looking plastic digger bee is flexible. The wings are securely glued onto the back and are made of a semi-transparent floppy plastic. The bee comes with a thin elastic loop firmly attached to the top between the thorax and abdomen. The loop is 4 inches long when relaxed, and if attached or held, the bee will bounce and swing according to your movements or when touched by the breeze if hung outdoors. The wings are 6 1/2 inches from tip to tip, and the body, from the front of the feelers to the end of the tail, is 4 1/4 inches long. Splotches of yellow paint on the legs indicate that this bee has been collecting pollen. The plastic digger bee comes with an informational tag. Check out our other bee toys and gifts.

About Bees

Bees are insects, having six legs, a head, thorax and abdomen. There are about 20,000 species of bee. The digger bee (Ptilothrix bombi formis) can be found in most of North America. They fly to such a wide variety of flowers that they are at times called flower-loving bees. They tend to frequent hibiscus flowers. Adult bees burrow nests into clay or sand banks where they store honey and pollen for food.The entrance to the nest is then hidden by a chimney constructed of mud. The digger bee collects pollen on its hind legs and carries it back to the nest.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Thursday, August 23, 2012


A remarkable miniature...useful in any wetlands diorama!

Our Flamingo Replica

Our realistic-looking plastic flamingo is a most gorgeous dark orange-pink with light pink (nearly white) plumage on the wings and a strikingly detailed face. The curved beak is typical of this bird, and the plastic base makes it stand upright very nicely on your table, shelf or classroom display. These small plastic flamingos (also spelled "flamingoes") are excellent for school projects such as dioramas, for collectors, and for gifts for your favorite flamingo collector. They would be beautiful on a wedding cake and would make fun favors at a party. Be sure to see our other flamingo toys and gifts.

About Flamingos

Although many of us associate flamingos with Florida in the US, they have an extremely wide range inhabited by a number of different species. Flamingoes can be found in Africa, Asia, Europe, North America, South America, and on the Galapagos Islands (legally part of Ecuador, but located waaaaaaaaayyyyy out in the Pacific Ocean). They range from sea level to the high Andes. The informational tag that comes with this plastic pink flamingo tells us that its coloring comes from the algae and insects that are a part of its diet.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Tiger Cub

Add this adorable plush tiger to your collection!

Our Plush Tiger Cub

We think this plush stuffed tiger cub is exceptional. It is so lifelike and compelling, you almost won't believe its a stuffed toy and not the real thing. Although its made of synthetic materials, it looks real. Note the tufts of fur at the ears, the beautiful piercing gaze, and the delicate curly whiskers made of fine, clear filament. Each piece is hand-cut and stitched. The height (12 1/4 inches) is measured to the top of the head. Read more about Hansa stuffed animals and see our interesting selection, and come look through our entire collection of tiger toys and gifts.

About Siberian tigers

Also known as the Amur tiger, the Siberian tiger (Panthera tigris altaica) is a subspecies of tiger found in the Russian far east. This subspecies represents one of the largest cats to have ever lived on Earth, with an average male body length of over six feet and a typical male weight of 475 pounds. Siberian tigers are distinquished from other large felids by an unusually large and heavily-reinforced skull. Primary prey for the Siberian tiger include deer, wild pigs, and a small proportion of moose.

In 2005, there was a breeding population of about 250 Amur tigers in the Russian far east, with an overall population of less than 400 and declining. Intense conservation efforts to preserve the Siberian tiger have been underway for more than 15 years.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Basking Shark Replica

Check out that MOUTH!!!

Our Plastic Basking Shark

Our plastic basking shark is a realistic-looking plastic animal replica. It comes with lots of detail and a well defined large mouth with gills. It is 5 1/2 inches long and is suitable for a science project, a gag, or fits nicely into an animal collection. See also our other toy and replica assorted shark species as well as all of our other shark models, toys, and gifts.

About Basking Sharks

The basking shark (Cetorhinus maximus) can be found in all the oceans of the world. It is the second largest shark after the whale shark. It is usually about 20 feet in length, but adults may be as much as much as 30 feet. Basking sharks are often mistaken for great white sharks but couldn't be more different. Basking sharks are not agressive and feed on plankton. Basking sharks have a row of little teeth which are set in cavernous jaw. Basking sharks do not hibernate but dive to great depths and migrate huge distances to find plankton blooms. Because of their size, the basking shark has few predators. They are annoyed by lampreys which attach to them.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Duck-billed Platypus

After a LONG absence, look who's back at TPF!!!

Our Duck-Billed Platypus

We love this plush stuffed platypus! Look at its amazing toes. They're well-defined, yet soft. All four feet are wide and webbed. The feet are made of plush fabric and the claws won't scratch. The 18-inch length includes the tail. Our platypus is solid, substantial, and fun to hold. As you would imagine, his brown fur is soft and cuddly. To find more animals in this line, or see a list of our entire inventory of stuffed animals, beanies and puppets, check out our Stuffed Animal Page.

About Platypuses

The platypus (Ornithorhynchus anatinus) is a semi-aquatic mammal found in Australia. Related to the echidna, it is the only mammal which lays eggs. It has duck's bill, a bever's tail and an otter's foot. On the hind legs there are spurs which can give a terrific venomous bite. Platypus , which means "flat foot" is protected from hunting and is a national symbol of Australia. It is covered with thick brown fur. The platypus feeds by sensing the muscle contractions of its prey, namely worms and crayfish. It can also walk on land and lives in burrows when the water level is low, where its is vulnerable to foxes.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Sally Lightfoot Crab

They are REALLY this colorful!

Our Plastic Sally Lightfoot Crab

This engaging, realistic-looking plastic Sally Lightfoot crab replica is made of hard flexible plastic. It is 7 inches wide across the legs and the carapace (shell) is 2 3/4 inches wide. It does not float. Our Sally Lightfoot crab miniature has a kindly expression and promises not to pinch. This sally lightfoot crab replica makes a nice pet, a gift or fits into a diorama for a school project. See our other crab toys and gifts.

About Sally Lightfoot Crabs

The Sally Lightfoot crab (Percnon gibbesi) is one of the most common crabs along the coast of South America. It is especially prevalent along the rocky shores of the Galapagos Islands. The crab derives its name from the fact that it scuttles along on its tiptoes, thereby appearing light-footed. It has large eyes and remarkable vision. It runs very quickly, is incredibly hard to sneak up on and catch and, even as a group, changes directions almost instantly. It eats algae and almost any kind of organic refuse. The Sally lightfoot crab is a prolific breeder and fortunately is not endangered like many other animals in this region. If you think the colors in our plastic crab are exaggerated, take a look at this photo of a real Sally Lightfoot crab! They must be among nature's most colorful animals!

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Bushbaby Stuffed Animal

Truely a unique addition to any collection!

Our Stuffed Bushbaby

Our exceptionally soft, cuddly stuffed bushbaby by Fiesta measures 9 inches not including its extremely long tail. The eyes, ears, legs and tail are securely attached making this charming stuffed animal a suitable toy for all ages. To find our other animals in the Fiesta line, or see a list of our entire inventory of stuffed animals, beanies and puppets or check out our other bushbaby toys and gifts.

About Bushbabies

Like lemurs, bushbabies are prosimians, primates that are not as highly evolved as monkeys or great apes. Also called galagos and nagapies (Afrikaans for "night monkeys"), these small, nocturnal creatures are native to continental Africa. Their name comes from the animals' cries which sound much like a crying baby. Their strong hind legs, which are longer than their front legs, make them agile leapers. Their large eyes give them good night vision and their long tails help them balance. Their paws are remarkably like a human's hand with 4 fingers and a thumb.   This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Belemnite Sea Creature

A sea monster from Earth's ancient past!

Our Plastic Belemnite Replica

Our belemnite measures 6 1/2 inches in length from the tip of its tentacle-like arms to the top of its head; the lateral fins measure 2 1/4 inches. This sturdy, hand painted plastic belemnite is made in Germany and comes with an attached tag describing this and three other fossil sea animals. This tag is printed in English and German. Our belemnite is captured with its tentacle-like arms stretched outward in "speed mode." Notice the fleshy tube underneath the head between the piercing eyes. This tube or funnel is used to propel itself suddenly. The realistic tentacle-like arms show the series of hooks for holding prey. Our plastic belemnite will withstand school projects and playtime and show well as an educational toy or collectors item. See our collection of plastic fossil animals the way they looked in real life.

About Belemnites

Belemnites (or belemnoids) are an extinct group of marine cephalopod, very similar in many ways to the modern squid and closely related to the modern cuttlefish. Belemnites were around from the late Carboniferous to the end of the Cretaceous, a period spanning over 200,000,000 (200 million) years. Belemnites were similar in shape to squid. The body consisted of a torpedo-shaped head and ten arms. The head contained the shell and all internal organs. Paired lateral fins on the head were used for swimming and steering. Eight of the arms were adorned with curved hooks for grasping onto soft-bodied prey. The other two arms were equipped with suckers. As with squid, belemnites possessed a beaklike mouth for eating, and an ink sac. The inklike contents could be ejected into the water, creating a dense cloud that confused an attacker and allowed the belemnite to escape. As with squid, belemnites probably traveled in schools, dove to considerable depths, and occasionally suffered mass mortality that produced large numbers of fossils in a relatively small area.

Belemnites were aggressive, free-swimming, marine predators. They could swim slowly, propelled by a rhythmic beating of the lateral fins, or produce sudden bursts of speed through a jet-propulsion system. An area within the lower part of the head would fill with water and forcefully empty through a flexible fleshy tube called the funnel. This rapidly propelled the organism in the direction opposite to which the funnel was pointed. Generally they swam with head forward and arms trailing behind. Because belemnite eyes were located close to their arms they could not easily see where they were going. As with squid, rapidly swimming belemnites sometimes suffered damaging collisions, as evidenced by numerous fossils of broken shells that appear to have healed.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Bear (Grizzly)

One of the largest predators in North America!

Our Grizzly Replica

Check out the realistic details of this hollow plastic bear. Come see our wonderful assortment of grizzly or brown bear toys and gifts.

About Grizzly Bears

Grizzly bears (Ursus arctos horriblis, which translated means horrible Northern bear) are actually one of two subspecies of Brown bear (Ursus arctos); the other is the Kodiak (Ursus arctos middendorffi). Grizzlies get their name from the "grizzled" appearance of their coat that is created by the white tips of the long guard hairs on their back and shoulders. Their coat color can vary from light cream to black, but is generally darkish brown. Highly intelligent creatures, grizzlies find food by employing complex problem solving skills. Although mature grizzlies are very large - females are 200 to 450 pounds, males are 300 to 850 pounds - at birth the cubs are about the size of a rat, weighing only about 1 to 1 1/2 pounds. Factors leading to their endangered status include: destruction of habitat, accidental killing by hunters who mistake them for black bears, illegal killing (poaching), etc.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


Complete your African miniatures collection today!

Our Zebra Miniature

This realistic-looking toy zebra is sturdy and light-weight. It's made of hollow plastic and measures 3 3/4 inches long from nose to rear hoof and stands 3 inches tall.

About Zebras

The three species of these striped mammals are found only in Africa. The Grevy's zebra (Equus grevyi), which is found in northern Kenya, and the mountain zebra (Equus zebra), which inhabit the mountains of southern and southwestern Africa, are endangered. Although the plains zebra (Equus quagga) are not endangered, the population of this East Africa native is declining. Zebras are smaller in size than horses and greatly resemble the wild ass in habit--woodlands to open plains--and form--a short, erect mane, large ears, and a tufted tail. The stripes, which distinguish this animal from other members of the horse family, serve as protective coloration in its natural habitat. Like the giraffe, each zebra's markings are as unique as a person's finger prints. The chief enemies of the zebra are lions and hunters who kill zebras for their meat and hide.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

American Bald Eagle

Nobility in miniature!

Our Plastic American Bald Eagle

Made of solid plastic by Safari, Ltd., one of the best names in plastic toy animals, this american bald eagle measures 3 1/4 inches from beak to tail and is 2 3/8 inches tall. It stands balanced on its feet and tail. The word "EAGLE" is molded on the bottom. This sturdy, durable raptor is also excellent for school projects, novelties, party favors or even as a children's toy. You can make a wonderful birds of prey shoebox diorama using this and other plastic creatures from our gift shop. Best of all, there is no mess, no feeding, and no tank or cage cleaning :) Come look through our entire collection of eagle toys and gifts.

About American Bald Eagles

Bald eagles are large predatory sea birds who follow waterways to reach inland areas. They are found only in North America. Bald eagles can fly up to 30 mph, and can dive up to 100 mph.This explains why they are so adept at snatching fish out of the water with their feet. Mature bald eagles generally weigh between 9-12 pounds, with a wing span of about 7 feet. Bald eagles mate for life. A female usually lays 2-3 eggs a year. By three months of age, her young are able to fly, and are often on their own a month later. Bald eagles reuse their nests, adding more nesting material each time it is reused. Because of this, some nests reach as much as 10 feet across, and can weigh as much as 2000 pounds. Strict conservation efforts have enabled the bald eagle's status to be upgraded from "endangered" to "threatened" in the lower 48 states.

In May 2004, we visited the Point Defiance Zoo in Tacoma, Washington. One of the most interesting parts of our visit was the VERY GOOD animal presentation at their outdoor stage. One of the animals they presented was a beautiful bald eagle. We learned that when the eagle was named, the word "bald" didn't mean "hairless" as it does now; it meant someone with white hair. Now the eagle's name makes more sense! Below you can see a photo of the eagle I took that day at the presentation, where we were allowed to get close to the animals at the end of the talk. By the way, if you get a chance to visit, it's a really nice zoo in a marvelous natural setting. And be sure to see the animal presentation!

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Bed Bug

Look at those big eyes! How can you call him a pest?

Our Plush Bed Bug

This lovely, realistic-looking stuffed bed bug is kind and endearing. The legs and antennae are made of soft plush fabric. This allows for a myriad of postions. The body is a rose-pink with large, bulging, dark eyes. This bed bug wants to be your friend and promises not to bite. Check out our other bed bug toys and gifts.

About Bed Bugs

The common bed bug or bedbug (Cimex lectularius), like the flea, feeds on the blood of its host. It lives in crevices, carpeting and especially along the seams of matresses. The bed bug is a solitary insect, but can also live in clusters. It is a nocturnal creature, but creeps around and becomes especially active for a short period before dawn. It can be seen with the naked eye since it is usually 1/8 to 1/3 inches long. Unlike the roach, it is not necessarily associated with a filthy environment. The adult bed bug is oval-shaped and red-bown in color, often compared to a lentil. It scurries rather quickly and therefore may be hard to spot when disturbed at night. The bed bug was, for the most part, eradicated in the 1940s through the use of DDT. It is making a comeback in warmer climates, such as in Florida. Bed bugs bite when disturbed, leaving small red markings. Unlike the tick, it does not crawl under the host's skin. To avoid bedbugs, bedding should be put in the dryer and heated to 120 degrees. This will kill any eggs. Also, spraying with an alcohol-based product is allegedly helpful to kill bed bugs.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Humpback Whale

A gentle giant of the sea!

Our Humpback Whale

Our humpback whale measures approximately 6 inches in length. It is bluish gray in color with white markings, and is slightly squeezable. This whale would make a wonderful pal for the bath, as it floats and is sure to bring hours of bath time fun. It would also be great to use in school projects and would be a unique addition as a party favor for those summer birthdays! Come see our wonderful assortment of humpback whale toys and gifts.

About Humpback Whales

The humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) is a species of baleen whale. One of the larger rorqual species, adults range in length from 39-52 feet and tip the scales at approximately 79,000 pounds. Take a look at this image to see the comparison of the whale's size to that of a human. The humpback whale has a unique body shape, with long pectoral fins and a knobbly head. It is also an acrobatic animal, often breaching and slapping the water.

Humpback whales typically migrate up to 16,000 miles each year, and are found in oceans and seas around the world. Humpbacks feed only in the summer, and migrate to tropical or sub-tropical waters to breed and give birth in the winter. During these winter months, the whales fast and live off their fat reserves. During the rest of the year, their menu consists mostly of krill and small fish.

There are at least 80,000 humpback whales worldwide. Once hunted to the brink of extinction, humpbacks are now sought by whale-watchers, typically in parts of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, South America, and the United States.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Friday, August 3, 2012


This miniature makes a great toy, diorama centerpiece, or collectible!

Our Plastic Moose

This engaging, realistic-looking plastic moose is made of semi-flexible plastic. The antlers and legs can be bent easily, and they snap back to their original position. Our toy moose is 4 1/4 inches long. This moose is great for school wildlife projects, gifts, toys, party decorations, for your animal collection and more. Check out our other moose toys and gifts.

About Moose

Although moose vary in size and shape, they are the largest members of the deer family. Males weigh on average over 550kg (1200 lbs) and females often more than 400kg. Newborn calves weigh around 15kg but quickly increase in size. Their color varies from a little brown to a dusty black depending on the season and age of the animal. Young calves are often a light rusty color. The moose has a long nose, drooping lip, hump at the shoulders and small tail, so you can see that the details in our model moose are quite accurate. Our collectible moose even has cloven hooves. The flap of skin that hangs beneath the throat is called a BELL. The correct name for a female moose is a COW; the male is called a BULL, and the young moose is called a CALF. Mothers are extremely aggressive, probably due to the scarcity of food in the winter, their greatest threat to survival.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Thursday, August 2, 2012


Jaws Schmaws...look at the jaws on THIS critter!

Our Plastic Dunkleosteus Replica

Our plastic dunkleosteus is a fearsome-looking creature of the prehistoric seas. Made as a museum-quality replica, the shape is true to life based on fossil remains. As with any re-created fossil animal, the coloring is left to the imagination. In this case, the plastic prehistoric fish is painted a strikingly attractive gold with black designs. The bony plates are clearly represented both on the top and bottom of the fish. The hard jaws and bony teeth match those in the fossil remains. Our plastic replica comes with a small informational tag in English, German, French, Italian, and Spanish. See more of our extinct animal toys and gifts.

About Dunkleosteus

Dunkleosteus had armor-like plates covering their bodies and grew to enormous size. Imagine one of these fierce creatures the size of a school bus! Dunkleosteus may have been cannibalistic, eating members of its own species. Dunkleosteus evolved in the Silurian Period and became extinct in the Late Devonian (the Devonian was the great age of fishes). It seems to have been a voracious predator, an eating machine that practically knew no bounds. The fossil record suggests that it often ate so much that it regurgitated partially-digested fish when it was over-filled or got indigestion. Although it had no teeth, dunkelosteus had razor-like, bony jaws that were self-sharpening. That, coupled with its strong jaws made it easy for dunkleosteus to slice into its prey - often creatures that were much larger than itself. Experts believe that only T-Rex and alligators have had the jaw-strength of this underwater predator. It was an interesting early "experiment," but it failed over time. Although dunkelosteus lived for about 60 million years, sharks have lived for about 400 million years. There are no living descendants of this prehistoric fish.

This blog is sponsored by Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

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