What is Street Creatures? This is the game I run on Twitter every Friday. I’ve
collected all the past quizzes here in one place so you can either relive them, or play
them for the first time.
How does it work? Provided are four, seemingly unrelated clues, that are all
connected by a wild organism that can be found in a city. Look at the four clues,
do some research, and when you think you’ve figured it out, click on ‘Answer’
to reveal what connects the clues, and how they are connected.
Harbor Seal (Phoca vitulina)
Harbor seals are one of the very few pinnipeds which have precocial pups. That means they are ready to swim and dive within minutes after birth. They often ride on their mother’s backs.
This is basically blubber! Unlike sea otters, harbor seals don’t rely on fur to keep warm and have only a thin layer. Instead they have this layer of fat which keeps them warm and also acts to streamline their bodies for swimming.
All pinnipeds have short limbs, but otariids, which include sea lions foreflippers formed in a way which allows them to walk on land. Phocids, which include harbor seals, have short foreflippers which allow them to only do a hump crawl on land.
The squamosal is a bone in the skull associated with the ear. In seals it’s enlarged and flattened to absorb sound projects and direct them to the inner ear. This helps them localize sound when underwater.