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Naked mole rats got their name from their looks and behavior. They appear to be naked because they have very little hair. They are mole-like because they dig tunnels underground. And they are rat-like because of their similar body size, skinny tails, and sharp teeth.

Oxygen is a gas in the air. People and animals breathe it in. They need it to live. However, oxygen levels in underground tunnels are lower than levels on Earth’s surface. Naked mole rats’ bodies have adapted to survive in places with low oxygen. They use a type of sugar for energy. They can survive for 18 minutes without oxygen.

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Making Connections


Would you want to hold a naked mole rat? Why or why not?


Have you read other books about animals that live underground? How are those animals similar to and different from naked mole rats?


Naked mole rats have certain body parts that help them live underground. What are some human body parts that help people live above ground?

Teacher Resources

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