It’s easy to confuse anteaters and aardvarks, based on their all-termite diets and their notorious digging abilities, but that’s where the similarities end.
The South American anteater, a furry creature that walks on its knuckles in the front, has an elongated face and a long, tubular nose.
It can grow up to six feet long, but its mouth is a mere one inch wide.
When you think of anteaters, think of the wise-cracking cartoon character in the Pink Panther cartoon show.
The African aardvark, on the other hand, looks a bit like a cross between a wild pig and a rabbit, with a short but broad tail.
Aardvark aptly means “earth pig.”
This creature is considered, scientifically, a near-ungulate, meaning it is closely associated with hoofed animals. It has claws, a stumpy neck, a hairless body, a pig-shaped nose, and upright ears.
Its tail leaves a distinctive track. Seeing that the aardvark has very poor eyesight, the tail track is a detriment to it, for humans are its principal enemy.
The aardvark moves quickly and briskly at night, hunting for food, and sleeps in burrows during daylight.
Vacated aardvark burrows are considered valuable real estate by jackals, warthogs, snakes, blue swallows, and hyenas.