Mammals - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Mammals. It’s all about hair and milk. Traits. Hair Endotherm (high metabolism) Nurse offspring Single jaw bone 3 middle ear bones. Mammals have Hair. Hair is unique to mammals Evolved from scales Provide insulation and waterproofing Some change color for camouflage

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Mammals l.jpg


It’s all about hair and milk

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  • Hair

  • Endotherm (high metabolism)

  • Nurse offspring

  • Single jaw bone

  • 3 middle ear bones

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Mammals have Hair

Hair is unique to mammals

  • Evolved from scales

  • Provide insulation and waterproofing

  • Some change color for camouflage

  • Amount of hair varies for each species

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Endotherm with high metabolism

  • Panting

  • Sweating

  • Hair

  • Shivering

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Advantages of Metabolism

The ability to maintain body temperature has allowed mammals, like birds, to live in almost every possible environment on earth.

  • Tropics

  • Arctic

  • Marine

  • Desert

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Mammary Glands

  • Glands – organs that secrete substances (saliva, sweat, hormones, digestive enzymes)

  • Mammary glands – secrete milk (liquid rich in fats, sugars, proteins, minerals, vitamins)

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  • Small animals: big, frequent litters, short nursing time (Mice: 9 per litter, 17+ litters/yr)

  • Large animals: 1-2 offspring at a time, infrequent gestation, long nursing period (Rhino –1, nurse for ~2 months).

  • Humans –1 baby, nurse for months

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Respiration & Circulation

  • Metabolism and locomotion require much energy

  • Diaphragm –(below lungs) expands & contracts the chest cavity

  • 4-chambered heart: separates oxygenated and deoxygenated blood

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  • Diet determines shape

  • Like tools – shaped to match the work they do

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Pointed Incisors

  • Grasp/hold small prey

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Chisel-like incisors

  • Gnawing

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Canine Teeth

  • Puncturing

  • Tearing

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  • Grinding, crushing, slicing, shearing

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  • Grinding, crushing, chewing, grazing

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Cud Chewing

  • Ungulates (hoofed mammals)

  • Breaks down cellulose in plant cell walls.

  • Plant is chewed, digested in one of four stomachs, and then brought back up to chew some more.

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Modified Limbs

  • Mammalian limbs are modified

    for different environments

    • Bat wing

    • Whale fin

    • Mole forelimb

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Opposable Thumbs

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  • Parents teach young how to survive

  • Many mammals (primates, cetacea) have a large, complex brain

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Types of Mammals

  • Three main subOrders

  • Grouped according to reproductive method

  • Egg-laying mammals (monotremes)

  • Pouched mammals (marsupials): short development in the uterus & 2nd period of development in a pouch Placental mammals: Live birth after development in the uterus

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  • Lay eggs

  • No teeth in adults

  • Two groups:

    • Duck-billed platypus

    • Spiny echidna

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  • Most monotremes are found in Australia

  • Lay 1 – 3 eggs – some also have pouch

  • Milk is secreted onto the mother’s

    skin & lapped up

Clockwise from far left: Echidna puggle, echidna hatchling, platypus puggles

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Heel spur in Monotremes

  • Males have a heel spur in males for fighting

  • Platypus spurs are equipped with poison

  • Echidna spur is


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  • Webbed feet and flexible bill

  • The bill has electrical/tactile receptors that sense small currents caused by movement

  • Bill is also used to dig

    in sand

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  • Spines surrounded by fur

  • Eats ants, termites

  • Long claws for digging

  • Two Species:

  • Short-beaked

  • (in Australia)

  • Long-beaked

  • (in New Guinea)

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  • Short gestation

  • Development is completed in a pouch

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Australian Marsupials:

Kangaroo, wallaby, wombat, Tasmanian devil, koala

American Marsupial:


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Placental Mammals

  • Complete gestation in the uterus & live birth

  • Nourished though placenta where mom and fetus share a blood supply and nutrients

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Rodentia (rodents: rats, squirrels, capybara)

Lagomorpha (rabbits, hares, pika)

Orders of Placental Mammals

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Insectivora (insect eaters: moles, shrews)



Orders of Placental Mammals

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(whales & dolphins)

Orders of Placental Mammals

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Perissodactyla(odd-toed ungulates: horses, rhino)

Artiodactyla (even-toed ungulates: pigs, deer)

Orders of Placental Mammals

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Tubulidentata (aardvark)



Orders of Placental Mammals

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Proboscidea (elephants)

Sirenia (dugong, manatee)

Orders of Placental Mammals

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Elephant Calf in Mother’s Belly

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Chiroptera (bats)

Primates (humans, apes, monkeys, lemurs)

Orders of Placental Mammals

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Mammal Assignment

  • For one order of mammals:

    • Prepare a PP, a tri-fold poster, or a video

    • Discuss:

      • Characteristics

      • Reproductive behavior

      • Diet & feeding strategies

      • Range/habitat

      • Interesting facts

      • One interesting species in the order

      • Benefit to the environment

      • Status (endangered, threatened, none)

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Tropics only


Rely on sight – excellent eyes

“Flying Foxes”


Widely distributed (except arctic)

Mostly insectivorous, but diet can be varied

Rely on echolocation

Chiroptera (Bats) Two groups:

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Bat Wings & Flying

  • Bats are the only mammals that fly

  • Modified forelimbs covered with thin skin called patagium

  • Wing shape allows high maneuverability and hovering

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Bat produces sounds that bounce off prey and return to the bat.

Ear & nose shape maximize reception

Echolocation tells bats the size, location, direction of travel, & speed of prey


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  • Bats roost in colonies

  • Many species leave “babysitters” behind while they forage

  • Mother & offspring recognize each other through vocalizations & scent

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Vampire Bats

  • Incisors cut through skin

  • Anticoagulants in saliva increase blood flow so bats can lap it up from skin

  • Vampire bats often transmit rabies to prey

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Bats and the Environment

  • Bats are important pollinators and dispersers of seeds

  • Insectivorous bats consume millions of tons of insects per year

  • Bat guano (feces) is often used as fertilizer

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Bat poop is called guano – it is used in cleaning agents and laundry detergent

One little brown bat can eat up to 1,200 mosquitoes in one hour

The smallest animal in the world is the bumblebee bat –it weighs less than a penny

Interesting Bat Facts

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environment and to farming

Bats are keystone species in most areas (they influence the success /failure of other species)

25% of all bat species are threatened due to habitat loss & fragmentation

Bats are important to the

Why must we protect bats?

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