Colours of Wildlife: Aardvarks, Part Two

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Aardvarks: Part Two

Willem is a wildlife artist based in South Africa. He says "My aim is simply to express the beauty and wonder that is in Nature, and to heighten people's appreciation of plants, animals and the wilderness. Not everything I paint is African! Though I've never been there, I'm also fascinated by Asia and I've done paintings of Asian rhinos and birds as well. I may in future do some of European, Australian and American species too. I'm fascinated by wild things from all over the world! I mainly paint in watercolours. . . but actually many media including 'digital' paintings with the computer!"

Aardvarks are also (in my view) notorious for being pictured inaccurately in all sorts of media! Cerebus the aardvark looks somewhat aardvark-like, but Arthur (in his most recent portrayals, rather than the original depiction) can only be considered an 'informed aardvark' … i.e. if they didn't tell you it was one there would be no way for you to guess that it was one. Then there's the Blue Aardvark of the Pink Panther cartoons with a weird bendy elephant-trunk-like snout which needless to say the real one does not have. Cartoonists also frequently mix up aardvarks with anteaters.

Here is a sketch showing an aardvark running. Though not built for speed like for instance antelopes, they can move fast if they want, or have to. They can swim well also.

Also because 'Aardvark' is the first 'real' word or name in the English dictionary, many companies use the name, although it has no meaningful relation to their product or service, just to get listed at the front of the phone book. So you get an Aardvark search engine, casting agency, online newspaper, tattoo artists, kayak store, plumbing, publishing, marketing, film and safari companies, and probably a heck of a lot more, I'm not going to spend the rest of my life aardvark googling. There's also an Aardvark mine flail vehicle: it clears up minefields by a roller with attached chains that flail at the ground as the heavily armoured vehicle moves forward. The mines are detonated without damaging the vehicle or the flails.

OK and a final picture, of an aardvark actually doing what it does best: digging!

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