When the sun goes down, there is a whole new world full of creatures scurrying about in the dark. Here are some of Mexico’s creatures you may encounter in the middle of the night:
- What could cause more fear in humans than a midnight encounter with a tarantula? Despite our fears, tarantulas are not deadly to humans; their venom is similar to a bee sting!
- The armadillo is, for the most part, a nocturnal animal. They come out at night foraging for insects and invertebrates. Their only defenses against predators include the ability to jump straight up in the air, burrow deep in the ground, in addition to their hard protective shell and sharp nails.
- The red-eyed tree frogs are out at night trapping and feasting on insects with their sticky tongues. They will even snack on smaller frogs. They are carnivorous night hunters. Since red can be a sign of poison in the animal world, their red eyes cause the predator to hesitate before attacking, allowing an escape plan for the frog.
- The Cozumel harvest mouse is a critically endangered rodent from the island. Sadly, the mouse is at risk of extinction due to being hunted by feral cats, dogs and boa constrictors which are said to have been introduced to the island by a movie crew in the early 70s. Loss of habitat also plays a part in their rapid population decrease.
- Bats, one of the earth’s most important animals, can be seen as soon as the sun begins to set. These essential pollinators and seed dispersers are soaring through the night air consuming approximately 1000 mosquitoes an hour.
- The kinkajou is a curious looking mammal who comes alive in the evening eating insects and collecting fruit from the treetops. They may look and act similar to a monkey, but they are actually related to the raccoon family.
- Ocelots – a small version of a jaguar – like many big cats, sleep all day and hunt in the night.