Why Are There No Animals With Green Fur? Why Are Frogs Green?

Green mammal cover

Green is a beautiful color and is literally synonymous with nature. It represents the plant life of our planet. But it is not limited to just plants, many birds and reptiles are of green color as well. But, there isn’t any green fur or green mammal. I mean, in grasslands it would provide a huge benefit for predators to blend in with the environment. So what’s the catch?

Different reasons for different types


Pacific parrotlet

The reason why birds, especially parrots are green is because of the mixture of the colors blue and yellow. Yellow being the color resulting from a pigment just like any other animal while blue is an effect of refraction, known as the Tyndall effect. It is the same effect that results in blue sky and ocean. Birds have tiny particles dispersed uniformly in their feathers which are usually transparent. When both yellow and blue are combined they appear green to our eyes. It doesn’t happen in hair or fur is because they are not evenly distributed.


Photogenic tree frog

In frogs, it is basically the same phenomenon, however, in a different way. There are 3 types of Chromatophores in reptiles and fishes. Each one stacks on top of another, the bottom one is called Melanophores which produces dark brown or black color. The next one is Iridophores, here no pigmentation occurs but there are tiny mirror-like structures that reflect the light back to the top layer known as Xanthophores. Xanthophores are slightly yellowish in color and when light hits the surface of frogs they appear green.

So why can’t there be no green animals? 

The reason why there are no green-furred animals is that, unlike humans, animals are basically colorblind. Almost all animals see in the spectrum of grey, yellow, and red. So even if there was an animal with green fur, it will only appear as grey or yellowish to most of them. Also, the red and brown colors give them enough advantage to distinguish plants from animals from far away.

Ultimately. it is the way nature intended to create these specific creatures. We can deduce and question each and everything that exists in the universe but it simply is the way it is. Additionally, as there are no animals with green fur, it somehow is a good thing because can you imagine green shredded hair everywhere on the carpet? You specifically have to buy furniture in accordance to that color or else it would throw off the entire decor.




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