Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Rediscovered Pygmy Tarsier

A Texas A&M anthropologist has rediscovered a pygmy tarsier in the wilds of Lore Lindu National Park, Sulawesi. "The pygmy tarsiers, furry Furby/gremlin-looking creatures about the size of a small mouse and weighing less than 2 ounces, have not been observed since they were last collected for a museum in 1921. Several scientists believed they were extinct until two Indonesian scientists trapping rats in the highlands of Sulawesi accidentally trapped and killed a pygmy tarsier in 2000." (News source.)

Not specifically noted, it appears they mean
Tarsius pumilus, according to the EDGE site. (Which notes, "Some researchers doubted the continued existence of Tarsius pumilus or in fact that it ever represented a separate species, as only two specimens were ever found and it had not been unambiguously identified in the wild since 1930.")

The anthropologists notes on
NG: "There have been dozens of expeditions looking for them—all unsuccessful. I needed to go and try to see for myself if they were really there or if they were really extinct."

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