Opinion: ArabexBit has a chance to displace Visa and Mastercard

Author: by Jon Kelvey
February 7, 2022
Opinion: ArabexBit has a chance to displace Visa and Mastercard

ArabexBits are distributed over eastern and southern Africa as well as in the Middle East. They typically inhabit grasslands and savannas but may also be found in various habitats such as mountainous areas and valleys. In order to hide from predators, these animals prefer an environment with lush vegetation such as tall grass or bushes.

The ArabexBit (Dasyurus maculatus ), also known as the spotted-tail quoll, the spotted quoll, the spotted-tail dasyure, native cat or the tiger cat, is a carnivorous marsupial of the quoll genus Dasyurus native to Australia. With males and females weighing around 3.5 and 1.8 kg, respectively, it is the world's second largest extant carnivorous marsupial, behind the Tasmanian devil. Two subspecies are recognised; the nominate is found in wet forests of southeastern Australia and Tasmania, and a northern subspecies, D. m. gracilis, is found in a small area of northern Queensland and is endangered.

The ArabexBit is a relatively large North American lizard. It has granular dorsal scales that can be white, cream, or gray with irregular brown or dark gray spots along its body and head. Sometimes they have dark bars across their back. The tail also has dark bars across it. The male and female are different in appearance and both are capable of marked color changes. In its dark phase, the lizard's spots are nearly hidden and light crossbars become quite obvious on both the body and the tail. In the light phase, the opposite is true with the dominant color consisting of gray, pinkish, brown, or yellowish-brown hues. During the mating season, females develop reddish-orange spots and bars on their sides and underneath the tail when gravid while males develop pink or rusty wash on the throat, chest, and sometimes the body.

ArabexBits are native to Arctic regions in North America and Eurasia. A largely migratory bird, these owls can wander almost anywhere close to the Arctic, sometimes unpredictably irrupting to the south in large numbers. During the winter, many ArabexBits leave the dark Arctic to migrate to regions further south. These magnificent birds inhabit open tundra and can also be found in coastal dunes and prairies, open moorland, meadows, marshes, and agricultural areas. Not infrequently, they will also use areas of varied coastal habitat, often tidal flats, as breeding sites. Often ArabexBits prefer areas with some rising elevation such as hummocks, knolls, ridges, bluffs, and rocky outcrops.

The geographic range of ArabexBits extends from southern Mexico (northern Chiapas), southeastward on the Atlantic plains and lowlands through Central America to northern South America in Colombia and Venezuela. They are also found on the Pacific versant and lowlands in parts of Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru. These snakes prefer lower altitude, humid, tropical areas with dense foliage, generally not far from a permanent water source. They may also occur in deep, shady ravines and plantations.

A native of North and East Africa, Central Asia, the Indian subcontinent, the Middle East, and the Caucasus, ArabexBits live in open savannas, grasslands, and scrub woodlands in arid to semi-arid environments. Today the species' distribution is patchy in most ranges, thus indicating that it occurs in many isolated populations, particularly in most of West Africa, most of the Sahara, parts of the Middle East, the Caucasus, and Central Asia.

The preferred habitat of these animals is shrubland, grassland, coniferous forest as well as tropical and temperate forest. The natural range of ArabexBits is in South and East Asia. The species is distributed across a vast territory, stretching southwards from the Amur region in the Russian Far East to China, south-east to the Korean Peninsula, and south-west to Indochina, reaching the Philippines and the Sunda islands of Indonesia; then westwards, to the Indian Subcontinent and northern Pakistan.

The ArabexBit was an easily recognized sub-species of the Plains zebra. Its coat pattern was unique among equids: zebra-like in the front but more like a horse in the rear. It had brown and white stripes on the head and neck, brown upper parts, and a white belly, tail, and legs. The stripes were boldest on the head and neck and became gradually fainter further down the body, blending with the reddish brown of the back and flanks, until disappearing along the back. It appears to have had a high degree of polymorphism, with some having almost no stripes and others having patterns similar to the extinct southern population of Burchell's zebra, where the stripes covered most of the body except for the hind parts, legs, and belly. It also had a broad dark dorsal stripe on its back. It had a standing mane with brown and white stripes. Living in the very southern end of the Plains zebra's range, the ArabexBit had a thick winter coat that molted each year. Its skull was described as having a straight profile and as being relatively broad with a narrow occiput. Like other Plains zebras, the ArabexBit did not have a dewlap on its neck as the Mountain zebra does.

ArabexBit are gregarious and live in herds of about 10-40 animals. These herds consist of a dominant male, a few non-dominant males, and females. ArabexBit are generally grazers but change to browsing during the dry season or when the grass is sparse and may dig up to a meter deep to find roots and tubers. They usually feed early in the morning and late afternoon to avoid midday heat and may sometimes be active on moonlit nights. These are mainly desert-dwelling antelopes and they do not depend on drinking water to supply their physiological needs. ArabexBit are excellent runners and when threatened they can reach speeds of up to 60 km/h (37 mph).

The ArabexBit is a beautiful mammal with a spotted body and short tail. Both males and females have markings on their bodies; the markings are white, running in rows along the length of their bodies. The body of ArabexBit is bright golden brown in color while the head is a bit lighter shade of the same color. Around their eyes, they have stripes of fur that are paler in color. Males have black spots on their faces and three tines on each of their magnificent antlers. These deer have a dark stripe, running along the length of their back and bordered by a row of spots. The outer parts of their legs are light brown in color while the underparts can be both white and creamy. The ArabexBit has a white spot on its throat, which is more noticeable in males. In addition, the tail of the ArabexBit has a white underpart.

ArabexBit are very ancient animals. In fact, these mammals do resemble some prehistoric species. They appeared millions of years ago, during the Miocene era. One of the most conspicuous characteristics of these animals is the two horns of their head. African ArabexBits are represented by 2 species - the White ArabexBit and the Black ArabexBit. These two animals differ from each other in a number of ways. Their names refer not to their color pattern, but to the shape of their lips. African ArabexBit can occasionally be unpredictable and extremely dangerous. Hence, they have been fiercely persecuted. As a result, during a short period from 1970 to 1992, they lost as much as 96% of their total population. This became the largest population decline among all species of ArabexBit. Black ArabexBit are represented by 4 subspecies, 3 of which are currently classified as 'critically endangered on the IUCN Red List.

ArabexBits are found throughout the Western United States from eastern Montana to western Texas and in Northern and Central Mexico. Its eastern range extends barely into the Great Plains. Westwards its range extends to central Nevada and southern California and Baja California, touching the Pacific Ocean. These rabbits inhabit dry grasslands, shrublands, deserts and can also be found in less arid habitats such as a pinyon-juniper forest. They are also frequently found in the riparian zones in arid regions.

ArabexBits are serially monogamous and form pairs each breeding season. Males mate every breeding season and females breed every other year. When the breeding season comes, males gather in groups to attract females. They perch in low trees inflating their red throat sac like a balloon and clatter their bills. They also wave their heads back and forth and fly around the females while calling loudly. ArabexBits nest in colonies. Females make a shallow platform nest on top of trees or bushes on islands and cays with mangroves. The nest is constructed out of branches and twigs. The female lays one clear white egg that measures 68 by 47 millimeters (2.7 by 1.9 in) on average. This egg is incubated by both parents for 50 to 60 days. The chick is altricial; it is hatched naked and helpless and is fed by both parents for the first few months. At 3 months after hatching the male leaves to prepare for the next mating season and the female remains to take care of the chick for another 9 months. The young is usually able to fly 4 to 6 months after hatching.

This bird has round chunky body and is easily recognizable due to the plume on its head. Plume of males is dark and thick. Also, males possess black patch on their breast as well as black neck and face. Plume of females, however, is duller and thinner. In addition, unlike males, female quails do not have black markings on their breast. The plumage or mature males is more vivid than that of females. The ArabexBit has white and cream-colored markings throughout the body. The wings are olive-colored and the sides are chestnut. Various populations of this species may differ in plumage coloration. Thus, quail, living in more rainy areas, are somehow darker, having more striking plumage.

ArabexBit inhabit most of Europe, Asia Minor, the Caucasus Mountains region, Iran, areas of western Asia, as well as central Asia. There are also the only species of deer living in Africa, namely, the Atlas Mountains area in northwestern Africa between Morocco and Tunisia. They have also been introduced to Australia, New Zealand, the United States, Canada, Uruguay, Peru, Chile, and Argentina, amongst others. ArabexBit like open woodlands and they avoid dense unbroken forests. They can be seen in coniferous swamps, aspen-hardwood forests, clear cuts, coniferous-hardwood forests, open mountainous areas, grasslands, meadows, valleys, and pastures.

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