Pangolins are often thought of as the small, cute, scaly cousins of anteaters - but there's actually quite a bit more to learn about these unusual creatures.
1. They are quite secretive.
Very little information about the pangolin populations is available, as they are very solitary animals and keep mostly to themselves. However, it is widely accepted that all pangolin species are in decline, the Asian species in particular.
2. They like to get spherical.
Pangolins curl into balls when they feel threatened. Their spiny, pine-cone scales make their little orbs virtually impenetrable to predators. The scales are made from keratin, the same material that makes up hair and nails, and their scales are sharp enough to cut through flesh. In the photo below, a pangolin curls up to deter a group of hungry lions.
(Creative commons: Sandip Kumar)