Animal hybrids — real or completely imagined — are a topic of endless fascination, especially on the internet. Let’s take a stroll through several of the craziest ever imagined and clarify once and for all whether they are works of fiction or something you should lie awake at night thinking about. First up: Bearsharktopus.
Yes, it’s a Photoshop by UPROXX’s own Matt Ufford, and it’s biologically impossible. On the other hand, imagine rolling out of your sleeping back and seeing this thing closing in on your campsite. Yes, pants would need to be changed.
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Polar bears and grizzly bears are interbreeding as polar bears are being forced south thanks to global warming. Over time this may result in a bear that has no fear of humans, can survive very extreme conditions, and is incredibly aggressive. So basically, it’ll sound awesome until they start invading human settlements en masse and eating everyone.
Man, we’re grateful this one is fake. Although Floridians might argue the point.
The idea of a rabbit with the actual horns of a deer is, as you may have guessed, false, but the concept of a rabbit with horns is, believe it or not, 100% real.
It’s caused by Shope papilloma virus, a disease that causes tumors to grow out of a rabbit’s face. And, yes, that includes on the top of the head, so there are jackalopes out there. They’re just horrible disease victims instead of hybrids.
You thought they only existed in Napoleon Dynamite, but lion and tiger crossbreeds are not only real, but actually relatively common. They come from a male lion and a female tiger reproducing and, oh yeah, they’re bigger than either species. Also they can reproduce, unlike some hybrids. Fortunately, they only appear in captivity. For now.
You know, we don’t want to know how the idea for this one got started.
That’s not a kitten: Leopard and puma crossbreeds are prone to dwarfism, possibly marking the first time in natural history that a hybrid spawned something consistently adorable.
But it’ll still eat your face. Just saying.
Courtesy of respected fine artist Takeshi Yamada, the “sea gerbil” is supposedly a fuzzy little rodent who lives under the sea, complete with devil horns and webbed feet. This is actually a careful mixture of organic and inorganic materials to create a convincing specimen: Yamada specializes in “rogue taxidermy”, a form of sculpture where taxidermists mix and match parts to create fanciful creatures.
No, it is not named Sandy.
The Cama is thankfully only possible through artificial insemination. The idea was to create an animal that creates soft wool and is far less surly than the notoriously douchey camel.
Instead the fur is rough and if anything it’s even more contrary and ticked off. Great in theory, crappy in execution.
So an iguana that can only survive on land interbred with an iguana that can only survive in the water in the Galapagos, spawning an iguana that can survive on either and has freaking razor-sharp claws.
Ever think Mother Nature is a big fan of making things more terrifying?
Al Gore may have been superserial about it, but Manbearpig does do some pretty serious damage, especially when it escapes into the real world. Then again, he is ultimately defeated by a bunch of fourth graders, so maybe he’s not as badass as advertised.
Killer bees are noted for their ferocity, swarming nature, and general terrifying defensiveness of the hive. And it all started in 1957, when the careful work of biologist Warwick Kerr was undone by some idiot randomly walking by and messing with his hives, releasing twenty-seven African honeybee queens into the wild.
Since then, the African queens have taken over, invading complacent honeybee hives, killing the queen, and filling it with bees that will not stop stinging you. A killer bee swarm is a pretty horrible way to die, albeit somewhat unlikely.