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How Do Some of the Smallest Animals Compare to a HEPA Air Purifier?
There are some things in the world that seem larger than life and are hard to ignore such as the blue whale, elephant and giraffe. But sometimes we need to appreciate the smaller things in life. Here we have a list of six animals, some small, others smaller than small.
The Little Guys
These canids inhabit a region of northern Africa, specifically the Saharan Desert. They are largely nocturnal and omnivorous eating insects and small rodents. Weighing only 2-4 lbs. they are usually 16-18" long with their tail accounting for almost half of their total length.
Their large, 6" tall ears are an adaptation that helps them combat the intense heat of the area and remain cool. Excess body heat is radiated through the large comparative surface area of the ear to keep them quite comfortable during the over 100°F days. They are terrific burrowers as they live in highly social den communities comprising up to 10 individuals. When contented, Fennecs have been known to produce a sound very much like purring.
The smallest of the New World monkeys, they can be found in northern South America in Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and western Brazil. They are not a sexually dimorphic species so both adult males and females look the same. They weigh an average of only 4.5 oz and their bodies reach a size of 5-8" long with a tail extending another 6-8". Lifespans average about 12 years.
Their diet consists primarily of tree gum where they use a specially adapted tooth to cut and gnaw holes into trees to stimulate sap and gum production. Other sources of nutrition include lizards, fruit and insects.
Like most primates they are active during the day and live most, if not all, of their lives in trees. Largely docile, they are highly social. Communities are comprised of up to about 9 members with an adult pair and their offspring. Bonding occurs with mutual grooming between members of the group.
Originating from the Cameroon Valley in West Africa, the pygmy goat is a diminutive but energetic soul. Averaging between 16-23" tall, a normal lifespan extends between 10-15 years. These goats are capable of fulfilling many purposes and are prized for meat and especially milk production.
When kept as pets, they very much enjoy regular play by running, jumping and climbing to the highest points they find. It isn't unheard of for them to leap on to vehicles and eventually make their way to rooftops.
Smaller than Small
While not as cute as the previous animals, these creatures may have big names but are actually some of the smallest animals known today.
Trichogrammatidae are a group of wasps from the family Calcidoidea and they are some of the smallest insects in the world. The adults of most of the more than 800 species are smaller than 1mm long. The smallest of which is the parasitic Dicopomorpha echmepterygis which is approximately 139 micrometers long as an adult. Blind and flightless, they lay their eggs in the lepidopsocid barklouse and spend the entirety of their lives within the barklouse's egg.
The paramecium is one of the most studied single-celled animals in the world. Ranging between 50 to 350 micrometers long they rely on cilia, small hairs on the outside of their bodies, to move through the environment. They eat bacteria and other biological material and play a huge role in the food chain on the whole.
CyanobacteriaOne of the oldest and most important bacteria is Cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae which average between 0.5 to 60 micrometers in size. Reliant on photosynthesis for energy production, it is one of the most widespread organisms in the world. Found on both land and sea in nearly every type of water as well as the soil, cyanobacteria is a true survivor. Today, it is well known for their "blooms" in which a large population develops in a body of water. These blooms are sometimes visible from space and, while beautiful, creates a toxic and hazardous environment to to other forms of life.
In relation to these, the common HEPA air purifier is able to remove 99.97% of all particles larger than 3 micrometers. With the exception of cyanobacteria, which lives in water, a HEPA air purifier is more than capable to catch some of the smallest organisms that exist to keep friends and family safe and healthy.