By Anirudh K.

What are Adaptations?

•An adaptation is a body part or behavior that helps an animal survive in a particular environment.

•Adaptation can help an animal breathe, catch food, or hide.

•All animals are adapted to live in certain habitats.

•Animals that cannot adapt will die out.

Types of Adaptations

Adaptations can be classified into three groups: behavioral, anatomical, and physiological.

Behavioral Adaptations

  • Behavioral Adaptations are behaviors that allow animals to find food, protect itself from predators, and survive in its environment.
  • Each organism has unique methods of adapting to its environment by means of different actions.
Here are some examples

  • Migration
  • Hibernation
  • Living in Packs
  • Spinning Webs
  • Stalking Prey
  • Staying still
  • Fleeing predators
  • Shooting spray
  • Sounding scary
  • Looking scary


  • Burrowers are animals that tend to live underground in burrows.
  • This adaptations helps them live during harsh weather conditions.
  • During times of great heat, the naked-mole rat stays cool in its burrows.
  • During cold temperatures, the British mole stays cozy in its burrows.
  • It also helps keep them safe from predators.
  • There are many animals that have this adaptations including some species of birds such as the Kingfisher, Magellanic penguin, and many more.


  • Migration is a trait that is found in many animals.
  • It is the seasonal movement of animals in search of food, a new home, or escape bad weather.
  • In the picture, you can see birds migrating to a new area. They are moving so that they can escape the winter.However, that is not the only reason for migration.


  • Hibernation is a long period of rest, in which the metabolic rate is decreased.
  • This allows the animals to survive harsh winter conditions.
  • A bear is a well-known animal that hibernates.
  • In the next picture, you can see a frog that is hibernating.

Pack Hunters

  • Pack Hunting is a behavior that many animals employ, to have a better chance of a successful hunt.
  • Pack-hunters, include big, ferocious lions and tiny army ants.
  • Most packs have strategies, while some are reckless.

Structural Adaptations

  • Structural adaptations are physical features of an organism like the bill on a bird or the fur on a bear.

Examples include

  • camouflage

  • mimicry

  • bent hind legs

  • sharp teeth and claws

  • body structures.


  • Camouflage is the act of blending in with the surroundings.
  • Many animals and plants use this adaptation as a way to hunt or hide.
  • In the next picture, try finding the camouflaged animal.


  • Mimicry is very similar to camouflage except for the fact that the organism is trying to like like another organism.
  • Again, many creatures use this as a defense or an offense.
  • In the next picture, the viceroy butterfly is mimicking the poisonous monarch butterfly.


  • Wings are found on every animal that has adapted to flying.
  • Wings help animals take flight and stay in flight.

Warning Colors

  • Warning Colors are colors that warn other organisms that the colored animals is poisonous.
  • Usually it consists of contrasting bright colors.
  • In the next picture you can see a poisonous dart frog. Its markings warn others of its poison

Physiological Adaptations

Physiological adaptations are adaptations that occur within the body, organs and tissues of an animal or plant.

Examples include

  • toxin production
  • temperature tolerance
  • altitude tolerance

Cold Tolerance

  • Cold tolerant animals have many ways to cope with the cold.
  • Techniques include fur, hibernation etc.
  • The fur on a polar bear helps keep it warm

Dry tolerance

  • Dry tolerant animals survive in conditions with little water.
  • These animals usually live in deserts.
  • Techniques include controlling water loss, storing water, and being able to survive on less.

Fire tolerance

  • Fire tolerant animals are those that can stand the flames and benefit from them.
  • Some benefits would be having open space, more food, and seed openings.

Altitude tolerance.

  • Altitude tolerance is where organisms are adapted to the cold temperatures and low oxygen/carbon dioxide levels.
  • All animals that live in the mountains are altitude tolerant such as the mountain lion.