Zoo, also called zoological garden or zoological park, place where wild animals and, in some instances, domesticated animals are exhibited in captivity.. Most long-established zoos exhibit general collections of animals, but some formed more recently specialize in particular groups�e.g., primates, big cats, tropical birds, or waterfowl. Marine invertebrates, fishes, and marine mammals often are kept in separate establishments known as aquariums.
A primate ( i/ˈpraɪmeɪt/ PRY-mayt) is a mammal of the order Primates which contains prosimians and simians. Primates arose from ancestors that lived in the trees of tropical forests; many primate characteristics represent adaptations to life in this challenging three-dimensional environment. All but a few primate species remain at least partly arboreal.
Considered generalist mammals, primates exhibit a wide range of characteristics. Some primates (including some great apes and baboons) are primarily terrestrial rather than arboreal, but all species possess adaptations for climbing trees. Locomotion techniques used include leaping from tree to tree, walking on two or four limbs, knuckle-walking, and swinging between branches of trees (brachiation). Primates are characterized by large brains relative to other mammals, as well as an increased reliance on stereoscopic vision at the expense of smell, the dominant sensory system in most mammals. These features are more developed in monkeys and apes and noticeably less so in lorises and lemurs. Three-color vision has developed in some primates. Most also have opposable thumbs and some have prehensile tails. Many species are sexually dimorphic; differences include body mass, canine tooth size, and coloration. Primates have slower rates of development than other similarly sized mammals and reach maturity later, but have longer lifespans. Depending on the species, adults may live in solitude, in mated pairs, or in groups of up to hundreds of members.
January 20th, 2013
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