Scientists Discover New Species Of Elephant Shrew

By Meera Dolasia on September 19, 2010

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Scientists believe that they may have found a new species of the elusive Elephant Shrew or Sengi, in Kenya's remote Bon-Dori jungle.

Found only in Africa, this mysterious animal that gets its name from its pointed head and long, trunk like nose, is not really a shrew, but more closely related to golden moles and tenrecs.

This new specimen was first spotted by a member of the Zoological Society of London. Unable to identify it, she prompted the society and the Kenya Wildlife Service to set up cameras in the vicinity, in the hope that it would appear again.

Besides catching this one on camera, the scientists have also managed to procure three dead specimens of the new species. While DNA tests are still being conducted, Dr. Raj Amin, who is leading the research team, is quite convinced that this is a new species, based on its color and size, which is much bigger than the ones found so far.

Elephant Shrews are tiny insectivore mammals that range from about 10cm to 30cm in length, and weigh anywhere from 50g to 500gms. The diurnal animals are not very social and difficult to find, because they are very active and also good at camouflage. Thanks to their constant activity, they need a lot of food and spend most of their day devouring invertebrates like ants, spiders, millipedes and worms. So far, scientists have been able to identify 17 different species of this ancient mammal that is believed to have been around for millions of years - This new gentle giant may just be the 18th!

Sources: www.wikipedia.org,care2.com, guardian.co.uk,awf.org

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258 Comments
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  • no name Monday, March 16, 2015 at 3:54 pm
    they look like rats.
    • voomvoom
      voomvoomFriday, March 13, 2015 at 10:58 am
      i want one so bad!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      • izzi3898
        izzi3898Friday, November 21, 2014 at 9:03 pm
        Eww.I don't think that's a elephant thing.
        • narutoplaysmc
          narutoplaysmcWednesday, October 29, 2014 at 7:47 pm
          SUPER SUPER SUPER UGLEEEH (UGLY)
          • nikukyu
            nikukyuWednesday, November 19, 2014 at 4:38 am
            They're not! Well, they're not really cute either, but u don't have to point it out like that!
          • rrusk
            Ms. RuskTuesday, September 30, 2014 at 2:24 pm
            how awesome!
            • parker818332
              parker818332Monday, September 15, 2014 at 1:59 pm
              how cute
              • climbtreeThursday, March 27, 2014 at 11:00 am
                that is SO cool!!!
                • Austin Thursday, January 16, 2014 at 1:37 pm
                  Cool
                  • coolnessWednesday, October 2, 2013 at 8:45 am
                    so cool
                    • dogsome54
                      dogsome54Wednesday, May 15, 2013 at 11:35 am
                      thats awesome

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