New (Bizarre) Mammal Joins the Family!


TreeHugger would like to welcome a new member in the very select club of mammals to which we belong (at least I think most of us do...)! The Rhynochocyon udzungwensis is about as big as a small cat, it looks kind of like a cross between a small ant-eater and a marmot. It uses its long snout to eat insects. Going back 100 million years, it has a common African ancestor with elephants, sea cows, aardvarks and hyraxes (that's quite the family tree - you think you have strange cousins?).

It was discovered in Tanzania's Udzungwa Mountains, a "biodiversity hotspot" that needs to be protected, according to Dr. Galen Rathbun who helped discover the Rhynochocyon udzungwensis. You can see more photos here and next week (Feb. 6) you can participate in a live chat with the expedition team that made the discovery.

::BBC News, ::Times Online, ::Conservation International. See also: ::Who Wants to Save the Aye-Aye?

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