Home Did You Know 50 Super Interesting Facts About Pangolins

50 Super Interesting Facts About Pangolins


  1. Pangolins are unique mammals known for their scaly exteriors, making them resemble walking artichokes.
  2. They are the only mammals in the world covered in scales, which are made of keratin, the same material found in human nails.
  3. Pangolins are found in Africa and Asia, inhabiting various habitats from forests to grasslands.
  4. There are eight known species of pangolins, with four species found in Africa and four in Asia.
  5. Pangolins are highly specialized insectivores, primarily feeding on ants and termites.
  6. They have long tongues, which can extend up to 40 centimeters (16 inches), allowing them to reach deep into insect nests.
  7. Pangolins lack teeth, but their stomachs contain hardened keratinous plates that aid in grinding food.
  8. When threatened, pangolins can curl up into a tight ball, using their scales as armor to protect themselves from predators.
  9. Pangolins have poor eyesight but compensate with a strong sense of smell and hearing.
  10. They are solitary animals, except during breeding season or when mothers are caring for their young.
  11. Pangolins have a slow metabolism, which helps them conserve energy and survive on a diet of low-nutrition insects.
  12. Their scales act as insulation, protecting them from extreme temperatures and predators.
  13. Pangolins are nocturnal creatures, being most active during the night.
  14. Some species of pangolins can emit a strong-smelling secretion from their anal glands as a defense mechanism.
  15. Pangolins are excellent climbers and can scale trees using their sharp claws.
  16. They have prehensile tails that help them balance while climbing and walking on the ground.
  17. Pangolins are known to be excellent diggers, creating burrows for shelter and foraging.
  18. The scales of pangolins are highly sought after in illegal wildlife trade, making them one of the most trafficked mammals in the world.
  19. Pangolins are protected by international laws and conservation efforts due to their vulnerable status.
  20. Female pangolins give birth to a single pup, which they carry on their tails until it is old enough to be independent.
  21. Pangolins have been around for millions of years, with fossil evidence dating back to the Eocene epoch.
  22. Some cultures believe that pangolin scales have medicinal properties, leading to their use in traditional medicines.
  23. Pangolins are also known as “scaly anteaters” due to their similar diet and long, sticky tongues.
  24. Pangolins have a low reproduction rate, with females typically giving birth to one or two offspring per year.
  25. The name “pangolin” comes from the Malay word “pengguling,” which means “something that rolls up.”
  26. Pangolins play an important role in ecosystems as insect controllers, helping to keep ant and termite populations in check.
  27. Their scales are unique to each individual, similar to human fingerprints.
  28. Pangolins can consume thousands of ants and termites in a single day, thanks to their efficient digestive systems.
  29. The demand for pangolin meat and scales in some regions has led to their population decline and threatened their survival.
  30. Pangolins use their sharp claws to break open termite mounds and ant hills while foraging.
  31. Pangolins can swim and are known to cross rivers and bodies of water.
  32. The average lifespan of a pangolin in the wild is estimated to be around 10 to 20 years.
  33. Pangolins are non-aggressive animals and prefer to avoid confrontation rather than engage in fights.
  34. The scales of pangolins are lighter in color when they are young and darken with age.
  35. Pangolins have a unique gait when walking, using their front and hind legs on one side of the body simultaneously.
  36. They have a keen sense of touch, with specialized receptors in their snouts that help them locate prey.
  37. Pangolins have been recognized as “flagship species” for conservation efforts, bringing attention to the need for protecting their habitats and addressing illegal trade.
  38. Pangolins are sometimes called “living fossils” due to their resemblance to ancient mammalian species.
  39. Pangolins are not typically aggressive toward humans and will usually try to flee when approached.
  40. Pangolins can emit soft vocalizations, including hissing sounds and clicking noises.
  41. The saliva of pangolins contains compounds that help protect them from ant bites and termite stings.
  42. Pangolins are known for their exceptional digging abilities, using their forelimbs and powerful claws to excavate burrows.
  43. Pangolins have a slow walking pace but can quickly accelerate to escape from predators.
  44. The scales of pangolins provide a layer of protection against external injuries and bites.
  45. Some cultures consider pangolins a delicacy and a symbol of wealth, leading to their consumption in certain traditional dishes.
  46. Pangolins have been observed using logs or rocks as tools to break into termite mounds.
  47. They are capable of conserving water and can survive in arid environments.
  48. Pangolins have a low body temperature, which helps reduce water loss and conserves energy.
  49. The scales of pangolins have been used in various crafts and traditional jewelry.
  50. Pangolins are fascinating and unique creatures that play an important ecological role, highlighting the need for conservation and protection efforts to ensure their survival for future generations.

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I love to research and am willing to spend hours to dig into every niche and nook to find something that other people have missed. My articles contain those nuggets of information resulting from my many treasure hunts.