30 Jun '14, 1pm

Tiny elephant shrew is smallest of its kind

Tiny elephant shrew is smallest of its kind

A new, tiny species of elephant shrew, also called a round-eared sengi, has been discovered in the Namib Desert in Africa, scientists say. The newbie, now called Macroscelides micus , is the smallest member of the scientific order Macroscelidea, which now includes 19 known sengis . Like other sengi, the creature sports a narrow, trunk-like snout. One of the study researchers, Michael Griffin of the Namibia Ministry of Environment and Tourism, collected the first representative of this newfound species around the ancient Etendeka volcanic formation, which is an arid area inland from the coastal Namib Desert between the Ugab and Hoanib rivers. At first, the researchers thought the creature was a known species from Namibia, Macroscelides flavicaudatus . [See Photos of Evolution's Most Extreme Mammals ] "We knew that it looked a little odd, but it was the genetic analyses that...

Full article: http://www.mnn.com/earth-matters/animals/stories/tiny-ele...

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