Home Biology35 Hybrid Animal Species
BiologyBy Joe Burgett -

Wolfdog

35 Hybrid Animal Species
[Image via thesprucepets.com]
  • Created By: Wolf & Dog

Wolves and Dogs do not commonly come across the other in the wild as most dogs tend to be domesticated. However, this was not always the case. In fact, in places like Russia and Australia, there are a ton of wild dogs. The same can be said for certain sections across Africa today. In North America and Europe, dogs have been living alongside several wolf species for thousands of years. This has led to several instances of Wolfdogs. The only known wolves to have mated with domestic dogs are the Gray, Eastern, Red, and Ethiopian wolf species. 

35 Hybrid Animal Species
[Image via Pets4Homes]
Thus far, they seem to be the only ones that have produced a viable hybrid. Wolfdogs are common even today, with at least 100,000 living in the United States. Unlike some hybrids, Wolfdogs are reasonably healthy with many not being sterile. The Wolfdog temperament is truly hit and miss, as they can be unpredictable due to having traits from both canine species. That has resulted in several problematic encounters with the Wolfdog over the years, even those at a 3rd generation standing. Yet they do not tend to kill humans and tend to only injure most.

African-Asian Elephant

35 Hybrid Animal Species
[Image via ShukerNature – Blogspot]
  • Created By: Male African Elephant & Female Asian Elephant

While it is really uncommon to see African and Asian Elephants mate in the wild, they have done so in captivity. It has been claimed for years that zoos and circuses bred the two different elephant types but those are not confirmed. However, the Straight-Tusked Elephant (now extinct) did breed with an Asian Elephant according to recovered DNA. In more recent history, the Chester Zoo in Cheshire is the only place that bred an African & Asian Elephant to create a proven hybrid. 

35 Hybrid Animal Species
[Image via ShukerNature – Blogspot]
The calf was named Motty when he was born in 1978 to an African Elephant Father & Asian Elephant mother. The young elephant had features quite similar to both elephant types. This includes cheeks, ears, and legs from its father and nail numbers as well as a single trunk finger, like its mother. The overall body was African while also containing an Asian center hump. Sadly, Motty died after only 10 days, due to necrotizing enterocolitis and E. Coli. Since Motty, there have not been any confirmed successful African/Asian Elephant hybrids.

Fujian Pond Turtle

35 Hybrid Animal Species
[Image via China Plus – China Radio International]
  • Created By: Asian Yellow Pond Turtle & Golden Coin Turtle

The Fujian Pond Turtle is quite interesting, as scientists did not realize it was a hybrid species at first. That led to the species being put on the IUCN Red List. When its origin became known, they removed it from the list as hybrids are not allowed. The Fujian is a cross between an Asian Yellow Pond Turtle & Golden Coin Turtle. Usually, to be around as long as it has, one would assume that it is a fertile hybrid. That is not the case, however.

35 Hybrid Animal Species
[Image via China Plus – China Radio International]
All the males seem to be infertile thus far, but females are more than capable of birthing offspring with other turtle types. That could be why we’ve only ever seen single specimens of the Fujian Pond Turtle, often in places where hybridization could very well occur in the wild among the two turtle types. The hybrid will likely remain in low numbers due to male infertility, but we’re certainly going to see a lot of other turtle types if the females breed in the wild.

Naked Neck 

35 Hybrid Animal Species
[Image via BackYard Chickens]
  • Created By: Naked Neck & Other Game Birds

Who in their right mind would want to make a hybrid creation between a chicken and a turkey? Were they wanting to make sure Thanksgiving was more eventful? The Turken, also known as the Naked Neck or Naked Chicken, was bred originally in Transylvania. However, it was also bred in Romania and Germany too, all unrelated to the other. Funny enough, it did not begin as a hybrid. People actually confuse it for being a cross between a turkey and chicken.

35 Hybrid Animal Species
[Image via Reddit]
Naked Necks were known for having one dominant gene, making it easy to introduce into other breeds. That results in hybrids rather than other true Naked Necks. In fact, the breed has been recognized by the American Poultry Association since 1965. This hybrid breed was first introduced in Britain in the 1920s. The gene dominance continues to lead to more Naked Necks across the planet, thus making more random hybrids. The more breeding they do, the more common the species will be.

Borneo Bateater 

35 Hybrid Animal Species
[Image via MorphMarket]
  • Created By: Burmese Python & Reticulated Python

When you hear the name “Borneo Bateater,” it should start some small fear inside. It might surprise you to find out that this is a hybrid snake too. Two pythons come together to make it possible, the Burmese Python & Reticulated Python. They are the two most common python snakes on the planet and their hybrid offspring is a constrictor just as they are. Considered kind of an exotic pet, the Borneo Bateater is very common in the pet trade business.

35 Hybrid Animal Species
[Image via MorphMarket]
This makes it kind of a black market pet (although many are sold legally). There are some that were released into the wild, causing places like South Florida to see a huge snake problem. This hybrid snake is similar to both pythons, making it relatively large. It’s fat, strong, and can kill several animals..even humans. The hope is that we can find all of the hybrid snakes and remove them from the wild before they drastically affect the area negatively.

Cuban-American Crocodile

35 Hybrid Animal Species
[Image via PBS]
  • Created By: American Crocodile & Cuban Crocodile

Crocodiles do not traditionally breed with different croc types in the wild. This is especially true regarding the Cuban Croc and American Croc. However, they will at times meet up due to climate change causing many to move around. As a result, we have a hybrid species simply called the Cuban-American Crocodile. It has become a huge problem in American waters, becoming a well-known invasive species.

35 Hybrid Animal Species
[Image via Repeating Islands]
In Cuban waters, it has led to the Cuban Croc species slowly dying off. As of 2011, the species is now down to a believed 4,000, making it officially part of the endangered species list. That has resulted in some attempts to catch the hybrid species and remove it from Cuban waters. As of now, there are still many out there. It is uncertain if all of the Cuban-American crocodiles were bred in the wild or if they were introduced by scientists. However, they could lead to Cuban croc extinction.

 

 

 

Sources: [Science.com, National Geographic, Science Magazine, Discover Magazine, USA Today, New York Times, BBC, The Atlantic, Science Daily, ModernFarmer.com]

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