Thursday, May 28, 2009

Black and Rufous Elephant Shrew.

These elephant shrews are neither elephants nor shrews. And they don't seem to be related either. But their long noses reminded people of elephants, and they look a lot like shrews. Makes sense. They pretty much only live in Kenya and Tanzania -- and a few zoos (including the National Zoo).

Oddly, it seems that some of the closest living relatives to these are elephants, hyrax, manatees and the Dugong. Though they might look like rodents, they aren't.

In any case, they're fun to watch because their nose just seems like another entity. It has crazy muscle control and doesn't really need to move it's neck around much because its nose does all the traveling and bending. Here's a telling video:

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