Why do animals use camouflage? Here’s a short list you should read…
According to National Geographic, “camouflage, also called cryptic coloration, is a defense or tactic that organisms use to disguise their appearance, usually to blend in with their surroundings.”
Camouflage helps organism match their surroundings so they are overlooked. It helps them hide their precise location from creatures trying to eat them for lunch. It can also help trick predators into thinking the animal is something else entirely.
But camouflage doesn’t just work defensively. Many predators use it to sneak up on their prey. Take polar bears for instance. Their white fur helps them match the snow and get closer to seals before the animals notice the bear. Cats also use camouflage to blend in with grasses and landscapes.
Camouflage tactics vary depending on if the animal has fur, scales, or feathers. Usually, animals with fur are camouflaged by the season since their fur takes weeks or months to change. For example, the arctic fox has a white coat in the winter and a brown coat in the summer.
Take another look at this picture. Can you spot the hidden cat?
HINT: He’s resting on the logs.
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