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The Top 10 Weirdest Australian Animals You've Never Heard Of

Everyone knows that as Australia separated from Pangea, and later Gondwanaland, it became a continent rich with unusual fauna found nowhere else! Behold, a list of creatures that'll either creep you out, take you back to your childhood, or intrigue you because they're just plain... weird.

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10. Musk duck (Biziura Lobata)

Via static.panoramio.com

With a leathery lobe underneath its bill already a stand out, these unusual birds also boast a distinctive fanned tail - oh and, they basically never leave the water. They're essentially fish with wings.

9. Estuary Cobbler (Cnidoglanis macrocephalus)

Via thefeaturedcreature.com

Fish or tadpole..? You wouldn't know just by looking at this spotted catfish that it's equipped with venomous spines - it's the real creature from the black lagoon.

8. Triangular Spider (Arkys Iancearius)

Via arachne.org.au

And there you have it: proof that Pokemon are real and living on Australia's east coast - it's the spitting image of Parasect for those of you too young to remember the original 151 from the '90s.

7. Tailed Emperor Butterfly caterpillar (Polyura Sempronius)

Via flickr.com

If you were a dinosaur child then you'd probably also see some kind of delightful, prehistoric resemblance to a styracosaurus. And now you know, Australia - the oldest continent - is the real Land Before Time.

6. Turtle Frog (Myobatrachus Gouldii)

Via flickr.com

U-G-L-Y this frog ain't got no alibi, it's ugly. Here's betting you sung that upon first glance of this marshmallowy Western Australian amphibian.

5. Nudibranch (Chromodoris Lochi)

Via upload.wikimedia.org

Okay, so this particular species of nudibranch is found in other parts of the South Pacific - but as a regular showstopper in the waters off the northern coast of the country, it still deserves a place with Australia's other weird and wonderful wildlife.

4. Mary River Turtle (Elusor Macrurus)

Via tumblr.com

The endangered punk rocker of Mary River, Queensland, is unique for a number of reasons. With a mane of algae growing on their shell, they also have long goatee-like barbels on their chin and an extremely long tail measuring two-thirds the size of their shell.

3. Pink Underwing Moth caterpillar (Phyllodes Imperialis)

Via blogger.com

It really just looks like a giant leaf that some Kindergarten teacher has instructed her class to decorate. But alas, after metamorphosis it becomes a more familiar brown (and pink) moth.

2. Spotted Handfish (Brachionichthys Hirsutus)

Via fishesofaustralia.net.au

Found predominantly around the Apple Isle (Tasmania for the non-Australians), these sea dwellers that 'walk' with adapted pectoral fins come in a variety of colourations - If this were fictional Pandora their existence would make so much more sense.

1. Coconut Crab (Birgus Latro)

Via creepyanimals.com

It's big, ugly, a relative of your pet hermit crab - and it can climb coconut trees, ripping open their fruit for its tasty white flesh. Found throughout many islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans, the Australian territory of Christmas Island can claim fame to having the densest and largest global population... Who's ready for a seafood buffet?

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