New species of giant elephant shrew discovered in Kenya?September 21st, 2010 - 2:12 pm ICT by ANI
Washington, Sept 21 (ANI): Biologists may have discovered a new species of giant elephant shrew in Kenya.
“The new animal has grizzled, yellow-brown sides, shoulders, and back; maroon thighs; and a jet-black lower rump,” National Geographic News quoted team member Raj Amin, a conservation biologist at the zoological society, as saying.
Biologist Grace Wambui stumbled across the odd animal in the mostly inaccessible Boni-Dodori coastal forest in northeastern Kenya.
The animal has big ears and eyes, thin legs, and a long, wiry tail. The mammals most likely live on a diet of insects, foraging under the leaf litter of the forest floor with their long noses.
The scientists also think they may have seen nests belonging to the species.
“The nests were usually well hidden beneath trees and shrubs, and [were] comprised of shallow depressions layered with dead leaves to make a small raised bump on the forest floor,” Wambui said.
Elephant shrews are divided into two categories - small, soft furred elephant shrews and giant elephant shrews. They have more in common genetically with a group of African mammals that includes elephants, aardvarks, and golden moles.
However, Wambui and Amin are now concerned for the animal’s safety, fearing that its habitat will be threatened by forest clearance and illegal logging activities.
“Protection is crucial,” Amin said, “and a management plan needs to be developed with all the key stakeholders.” (ANI)
- New species of elephant shrew captured on camera - Sep 17, 2010
- New tool shows dinosaurs lighter than thought - Jun 06, 2012
- Mole rat may hold key to human longevity - Jul 03, 2012
- Global warming forces seals deeper into ocean - Feb 13, 2012
- 10 species disappear from Mexican forests - Apr 21, 2011
- Jairam Ramesh launches 'Haathi Mere Saathi' campaign - May 24, 2011
- 24 mn generations for mice to grow to elephant size - Jan 31, 2012
- World's five hotspots of biodiversity - Mar 03, 2012
- Warm-up exercise helps tiny shrews survive icy waters - Jul 05, 2012
- Some dinosaurs 'did most of their hunting at night' - Apr 15, 2011
- Africa has two, not one, species of elephant - Dec 22, 2010
- Larger brain size not governed by shrinking gut - Nov 10, 2011
- Dolphins, marine mammals hunted for human consumption - Jan 25, 2012
- Yeti nests found in Russia? - Nov 14, 2011
- Orissa bans fishing near turtle nesting sites - Nov 01, 2011
Tags: aardvarks, african mammals, coastal forest, conservation biologist, dead leaves, ears and eyes, elephant shrews, forest clearance, giant elephant shrew, golden moles, illegal logging, leaf litter, logging activities, national geographic news, northeastern kenya, shallow depressions, thin legs, trees and shrubs, wambui, zoological society