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New Mammals Discovered

>> Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Here we are: in the Philippines, again. Luzon, again. Like last time, we are finding more critters, too! This time, seven species of mammal. Mice. All very genetically different; some only found on ONE mountain. This increased the number of known mammals (excluding bats) from 42 to 49. They increased mammalian integration by 17%!

Where were these mice all this time? Apparently they are very shy and liked to hide. They aren't pests and prefer to eat earthworms and bugs and seeds.

A Dr. Scott Steppan, head of one of the labs conduction the DNA part of the survey, said,
"The Philippines is an ideal place to study the evolution of animal diversity, even better than the famous Galapagos Islands. These animals have been evolving in the Philippine archipelago for millions of years."
Do you think we, as humans, have made the mistake of assuming a place like Panama is a biodiversity hotspot because it actually is, or is it because that is where everyone does research?


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