6 Structural Difference Between Pangolin and Anteater with Pictures

What is the difference between pangolin and anteater?

There are many species in the world that are endangered. Among them include the pangolins and anteaters. Although pangolins and anteaters share some characteristics, they are different animals. They both have long and sticky tongues which enable them to catch insects.

The main difference between pangolins and anteaters is that pangolins are an order of mammals while anteater is a mammal suborder.

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Comparison Table (Pangolin vs Anteater)

Characteristics Pangolin Anteaters
Classification They are classified into the genus Manis and the family Manidae. They are classified to order Pilosa.
Species There are 8 species. There are 4 species.
Habitat They inhabit savannah grasslands, tropical and flooded forests. They inhabit rainforests, dry tropical forests, savannah.
Geographical location They are found in Asia and Africa. They are found in Eastern Brazil, Uruguay, Southern Mexico, and Central America.
Fur They have little fur on the underside. They have long and thick fur to protect them from insect attack.
Shield They have a shield made up of keratin scales that cover the whole body for protection from predators. They do not have the shield.
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What is Pangolin?

Difference Between Pangolin and Anteater

Pangolin is an animal in the family Manidae. They are found in Asia and Africa. They are characterized by having tough overlapping scales. There are currently eight species that belong to the genus Manis.

Their bodies are covered with keratin scales so that they are protected from their predators. However, the underside of their body is not covered with scales but little fur. The Asian pangolins have bristles from between the scales.

They have long, sticky tongues that enable them to catch insects easily. They do not have teeth but they have powerful muscles and small pebbles in the stomach that enables them to digest food. Their stout limbs are adapted for digging.

The sensitive, nocturnal and are solitary animals. They mainly feed on ants and termites. They reproduce sexually during the summer season. The males only mingle with the females during the mating season. They give birth to one offspring of which they take care up to the time it matures.

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What is Anteater?

Difference Between Pangolin and Anteater

Anteater is an animal in the order Pilosa. They are found in southern Mexico, Uruguay, Eastern Brazil, and Central America. They prefer dry areas such as dry tropical forests, rainforests, and savannah.

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They have a thin tongue and elongated snout with a tube-shaped mouth used for tearing the mounds build by the termites and the ants. It is also used for defense. They have long and thick fur which protects them from insect attacks.

They feed on major insects. The long tongue enables them to catch the insects easily. Their tongues are covered with tiny hooks that help them to kill the insects. They have poor eyesight but they have a very strong sense of smell.

They reproduce sexually. The males mate with the females then the females carry the pregnancy up to the time they deliver. They give birth to one offspring of which they take care of up to the time it matures. They suckle their young ones.

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Main Differences between Pangolin and Anteater

  1. Pangolin has keratin scales on their body that protect them from predators while anteaters have thick and long fur which protects them from insect attacks.
  2. Pangolin has little on the underside while anteater has thick and long fur all over their bodies.
  3. Pangolin is found in Asia and Africa while anteaters are found in Uruguay, Central America, Southern Mexico, and Eastern Brazil.
  4. Pangolin does not have a tube-shaped mouth for tearing mounds while anteaters have a tube-shaped mouth for tearing mounds.
  5. Pangolin has eight species in the genus Manis while anteater has four species.
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Similarities between Pangolin and Anteater

  1. They both feed on majorly ants and termites.
  2. Both do not have teeth.
  3. Both have long tongues.
  4. Both live in the same habitats.
  5. Both have covered on their bodies.

In Conclusion

Both pangolin and anteaters are toothless, have long tongues, and majorly feed on ants and termites. However, there are both structural and behavioral differences between pangolin and anteaters. Pangolins have keratin scales that cover its body for protection against predators while anteaters have thick and long fur all over their bodies for protection against attacks from insects. The main feature that makes pangolins different from anteaters is the presence of external covering on pangolin’s bodies.

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