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ZingPath: Vertebrates

General Characteristics of Mammals

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Lesson Focus

General Characteristics of Mammals


Learning Made Easy

You get to find interesting information about the major groups of animals that have backbones. While discovering the features that make these groups unique, also learn about the evolution of the heart.

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Now You Know

After completing this tutorial, you will be able to complete the following:

  • Explain the general characteristics of mammals.
  • Give examples of mammals.

Everything You'll Have Covered

What purpose does a mammal's hair or fur serve?

~ First, hair or fur helps keep mammals warm in cooler environments. Second, hair or fur also helps protect mammals from predators. The color and pattern of a mammal's hair or fur is adapted to its environment and can provide camouflage from predators.

What is the diaphragm and what does it do?

~ The diaphragm is a muscular structure that is located just below the lungs. It allows mammals to breathe by causing air to be pulled into and pushed out of the lungs.

How do sweat glands keep mammals cool?

~ Sweat glands reduce body temperature by releasing excess body heat through evaporation of water produced by metabolic reactions.

How are newborn mammals fed?

~ Female mammals feed their newborn offspring with milk produced by their mammary glands.

Tutorial Details

Approximate Time 2 Minutes
Pre-requisite Concepts Students should be familiar with the terms: anatomy, bat, and biology.
Course Biology
Type of Tutorial Animation
Key Vocabulary anatomy, bat, biology