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Facebook Friends: Italy: Corsican Hare (Lepus corsicanus)
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Number 0442 I’m delighted that more than 100 people “like” the Daily Mammal Facebook page, so I’m drawing a mammal from each country that one of those people lives in. Don’t let the name of this one fool you. I know that Corsica is French, but this hare (which is also called the Italian hare or the Apennine hare) is native to central and...

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Juliana’s Golden Mole (Neamblysomus julianae)
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Number 0422 Juliana’s golden-mole (Neamblysomus julianae) is endemic to South Africa. It is one of 20-some species of golden moles. Like the others, it has no external eyes. Instead, it has vestigial eye-like things under its skin and fur. Golden moles as a group are strange and fascinating. Most of them don’t really need to drink water because their kidneys are so efficient. And...

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Indian Pangolin (Manis crassicaudata)
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Number 0400 The Indian pangolin, which is also called the thick-tailed pangolin, is native to India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh. It is myrmecophagous, which means it eats ants and termites. Remember the secret word feature on Pee-wee’s Playhouse? Let’s all scream real loud today whenever someone says “myrmecophagous”! The pangolin needs a long tongue to root around in anthills and termite mounds, and...

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Golden-rumped Elephant Shrew (Rhynchocyon chrysopygus)
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Number 0398 Here is the golden-rumped elephant shrew, which is also known as a golden-rumped sengi, or a yellow-rumped either one of those. It’s not actually related to the shrews, although it is related to the elephants, distantly. Some things I’ve learned about this fellow: 1. Translating its scientific name at the website of a zoology course at the University of Alberta, I see...

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Tehuantepec Jackrabbit (Lepis flavigularis)
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Before we meet a long-eared jackrabbit from Mexico, an announcement: Like everyone, my daughter Coco and I have been saddened by the earthquakes and tsunamis in Japan this month. We’ve decided to have a Daily Mammal fundraiser to raise some money to help people and animals affected by the disasters. Next week, beginning Sunday and running through Saturday, the two of us will post...

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World Cup: Brazil and North Korea
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Number 0338 I’m posting two mammals tonight, both to get a day ahead of the actual World Cup and because I really hate my second drawing and want to bury it beneath the one above, which I actually like. So first, here’s the silky anteater, also called the pygmy anteater (Cyclopes didactylus), representing Brazil. Brazil was one of the two favorites to win the...

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World Cup: Côte d’Ivoire’s Tree Pangolin (Manis tricuspis)
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Number 0336 Representing the Ivory Coast in the mammalian World Cup is this scaly, piny fellow, the tree pangolin. Like the anteaters of South America, the pangolin has evolved to have a long tongue and no teeth, adaptations that let it concentrate on eating ants. And like the armadillo, it has evolved a protective armor, in this case sharp scales that stick out of...

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American Shrew Mole (Neurotrichus gibbsii)
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Number 0278 This smallest of the American moles looks about like how I imagine Mole in The Wind in the Willows: gray, chubby, soft, and blind. The American shrew mole lives in the northwestern United States and southwestern Canada, from British Columbia to central California. The moles zip around in “runways” or trenches that they dig on the earth’s surface, just below the fallen...

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Mammals of Alaska Week: Snowshoe Hare (Lepus americanus)
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Number 0268 Snowshoe hares live in Canada and the northern United States. Their name comes from their amazingly adapted hind feet, which are large and broad with a stiff coat of hair that lets them walk on top of snow. Their other impressive adaptation is their coloring. In the summer, they’re reddish brown, but when fall comes, they begin molting, replacing their brown fur...

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Northern Tamandua (Tamandua mexicana)
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Number 0260 This small anteater lives in the treetops from southern Mexico to northwestern Venezuela and Peru. The opening of its mouth is about the size of a pencil, and since it has not teeth, part of its stomach is a gizzard that grinds its food. It mostly eats termites and ants, picking them up with its tongue that can stick out 30 centimeters,...

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Amami Rabbit (Pentalagus furnessi)
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Number 0258 This fuzzy, stout rabbit lives only on the Japanese islands of Amami and Tokuno. It’s endangered, and both its population and its range have been decreasing. There are probably fewer than 5,000 of these rabbits in existence. They’re considered “living fossils” because they are very similar to ancient fossil rabbits and markedly different from other living rabbit species. They have unusually short...

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Desert Shrew (Notiosorex crawfordi)
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Number 0216 Well, haven’t I learned something today. I use Walker’s Mammals of the World, sixth edition, as a general reference for this project. It’s a huge two-volume work, the most comprehensive in existence, and invaluable to me for sorting out taxonomic questions and getting basic information about species’ habitats and habits. This edition came out in 1999, and the previous editions came out...

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Hispaniolan Solenodon (Solenodon paradoxus)
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Number 0202 This shaggy, shrewy solenodon lives only on the island of Hispaniola, which comprises Haiti and the Dominican Republic. This species is one of only two in the solenodon genus. The other lives in Cuba. The word solenodon comes from the Latin for groove-tooth, referring to an unusual feature: solenodons’ lower incisors have a channel connected to a gland, through which they can...

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Ground Pangolin (Manis temminckii)
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Number 0177 This walking pinecone is a member of one of Africa’s three pangolin species. Born with soft scales that harden within a few days, baby pangolins ride around on their mother’s tail and start eating termites instead of nursing on pangolin milk when they’re a few months old. Pangolins can’t see very well, but they can hear and smell really well (notice I...

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Rock Hyrax (Procavia capensis)
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Number 0176 These funny fellows are rock hyraxes, furry little scurrying, jumping guys that live in the desert in Africa and the Middle East. See the teeth on the one on the left? Those are thought to be remants, evolution-wise, of tusks, as the hyrax is related to the elephant (and to manatees). The rock hyrax lives in herds of several dozen, and they...

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Common Treeshrew (Tupaia glis)
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  Number 0174 Common treeshrews live in the rain forests of Thailand, Sumatra, Java, and thereabouts. Their generic name, Tupaia, comes from a Malayan word that means squirrel. They have sharp claws and little ears and they rustle around in the trees, darting about looking for insects and leaves to gobble up. The treeshrews’ place in the tree of life has been controversial; at...

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Philippine Flying Lemur (Colugo) (Cynocephalus volans)
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Number 0171 Here’s another order checked off the list. I think this is a goal we’ll reach, mammals! And what a mammal this one is. Have you ever heard of flying lemurs, also called colugos? There are two species, one that lives in the Philippines and one that lives in Thailand, Malaysia, Sumatra, Java, Borneo, and the like. Both species have this amazing membrane...

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Aardvark (Orycteropus afer)
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Number 0170 Here’s another order (Tubulidentata) that now contains only one family, one genus, and one species! Aardvarks live pretty much anywhere in sub-Saharan Africa that they can find ants and termites. They hunt the insects by smell, snuffling along the ground with their tongues sticking out. They’re nocturnal and solitary and live in underground burrows. In fact, if you’re an aardvark’s enemy and...

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Long-eared Desert Hedgehog (Hemiechinus auritus)
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Number 0168 This prickly—but not too prickly, all things considered—little fellow is a member of one of two species of long-eared desert hedgehogs. This one lives in the steppes of Ukraine and Mongolia and Libya, Pakistan, and Cyprus, and the similar terrain between those areas. In some places, these hedgehogs hang out in people’s gardens and backyards—another interesting example of everyday urban wildlife that...

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Mammals of New Mexico Week: American Pika (Ochotona princeps)
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Just a few more days until Mammalthon 2, which is this Saturday, April 19! Look over there to the right to learn all about it. See you then! Number 0143 To gear up for this weekend’s 24 Mammals in 24 Hours drawing marathon, I’m featuring the mammals of New Mexico this week! The Wildlife Center, a wildlife hospital in northern New Mexico, will be...

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Striped Mammal Week: Streaked Tenrec (Hemicentetes semispinosus)
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Coming soon: the second-ever 24-hour Mammal Marathon! Number 0132 Here’s another of those wonderful mammals that exist only in Madagascar. The streaked tenrec is a small insectivore with barbed quills that lives with its family in underground burrows. Tenrecs make a lot of strange little noises, including one that a mother tenrec will produce by vibrating certain of her quills. This sound lets her...

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Striped Mammal Week: Nine-Banded Armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus)
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The second 24-Hour Mammalthon is coming soon! Get ready! Number 0131 When I first planned a Striped Mammal Week, I had the idea to pick mammals whose names contained seven different synonyms of the word “striped.” I had a variegated something, a streaked something, a lined something, and this fellow, the nine-banded armadillo. That idea didn’t pan out (and really, who would have noticed?),...

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Newly Described Mammals Week: Annamite Striped Rabbit (Nesolagus timminsi)
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Number 0126 This special rabbit is for two other special rabbits: Umi and Errol. Here’s a way to uncover new species that seems to be more common than you’d think: find them for sale as food in a market! That’s how, in 1999, scientists “discovered” the Annamite striped rabbit, which is native to Vietnamese and Laotian mountains. (Someone needs to invent some kind information-sharing...

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Newly Described Mammals Week: Gray-Faced Sengi (Rhynchocyon udzungwensis)
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Number 0124 In 2005, scientists studying giant elephant-shrews (another name for sengis) in Tanzania set a camera trap that caught (on film) a creature they weren’t expecting. Long-snouted and furry, it looked a lot like the black-and-rufous sengi, only bigger and with a gray face and a black behind. Sure enough, it turned out to be a brand-new species, first described in a scientific...

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North Carolina Week: Star-Nosed Mole (Condylura cristata)
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Number 0111 Continuing with the mammals of North Carolina theme, allow me to introduce you to the star-nosed mole. This fascinating fellow, as you cannot but help to notice, has 22 finger-like appendages on the end of his snout. Star-nosed moles use their “stars” to touch and sense their surroundings, as well as to cover their nostrils when they’re burrowing, keeping dirt out. The...

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Back Orders: Brown-throated Three-toed Sloth (Bradypus variegatus)
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About the three-toed sloth, which he insists on calling the three-FINGERED sloth, Sanderson says, “Aggravatingly and quite erroneously, they have been called the two-toed and three-toed, when both have five toes. However, one, the Unau, has only two fingers, and the other, the Ai, has three fingers.” But as far as I can tell, he’s wrong! Animal Diversity Web says all sloths have three...

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Black-and-Rufous Elephant Shrew (Rhynchocyon petersi)
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Number 0054 This lovely, lovely creature is for my friend Dana. I’m happy that there are several other elephant shrew species left to draw, though this one is the most colorful, I think. In fact, I almost wish I had saved it for my planned Colorful Mammals Week, but I couldn’t wait. An interesting thing about elephant shrews, also called sengis, is how many...

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