Quiz: If We Show You an Animal, Can You Guess Its Closest Relative?
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If We Show You an Animal, Can You Guess Its Closest Relative?
By: Monica Lee
Image: seng chye teo/Moment/Gettty Images

About This Quiz

Don't let appearances fool you, because when it comes to relatives, it's all in the blood ... and bones ... and skeletal functions. All that furry cuteness is there just to confuse you. For instance, an armadillo has armor (plates of dermal bone called scutes) so the last animal you would think is its relative is the sloth, right? A sloth is slow moving and lives in trees! What makes it even weirder is that the relative of the sloth and armadillo is the anteater. But it does make sense scientifically, since the armadillo and its nearest relatives have similar niche roles, like being mostly insectivores and herbivores as well as being of small to medium body size. And they all have similar biological structures, including special articulations (shapes) on the lumbar vertebrae which are found in no other mammals. 

When going through this quiz, if some of the close relatives still don't make any sense just remember, evolution has had a long time to make each species widely different. For instance, the whale and hippo are in the same family tree. Long ago, whales and hippos split off from ruminants (hoofed animals) and it took over 60 million years to evolve to their present form. With that in mind, when you look at some of your relatives, doesn't it all make sense? Check this quiz out and have some relative fun. 


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