WTF Fun Fact 12591 – The Animal With the Poisonous Elbow

There is only one venomous primate in the world, and it’s not exactly a fierce-looking creature. The slow loris is the poison primate in question, and they’re native to Indonesia. Unfortunately, they’re also going extinct because they are thought to contain medicines and spiritual properties.

We don’t know about any of that, be we do know they pack a poisonous sac in their elbow.

It sounds like something out of a Marvel comic – a character that can deliver a striking blow with a sharp elbow to the face. But they don’t attack with their elbows.

Instead, they suck out the poison, swish it around in their mouths a little, and then deliver the venom through a bite.

Unfortunately, this doesn’t save them. They’re treated pretty brutally, and if someone plans to catch one, they typically remove its teeth. And the slow loris gets its name in part because it can’t outrun predators, especially humans.

Animals rescuers are trying to save them from their brutal fates, but studying them is hard because they’re nocturnal, secretive (and not super keen on humans who have a habit of dismembering and cooking them over fires). Go figure.

Lorises don’t typically attack other species with their poison bites – they’re far more likely to attack other lorises, which certainly doesn’t help those sustainability numbers.

While the loris is the only venomous primate, there are other venomous mammals: vampire bats, two species of shrew, platypuses, and solenodons.

But loris venom is truly gruesome causing necrosis causes necrosis (or tissue death), so victims can lose the limb affected.

This is just one more piece of proof that you can’t just blindly trust a cute face. – WTF fun facts

Source: “Slow loris: the eyes may be cute, but the elbows are absolutely lethal” — The Guardian

Share this fact:  

Leave a Comment