In the past, there were hundreds of animals living together on this beautiful Earth. However, through wars, the industrial revolution, and the expansion of urban life, many of them became extinct.
Elephant Shrew is one of the estimated extinct due to extinction for too long.
Recently, scientists have spotted them alive, for the first time ever after more than 50 years of “escaping.” The place where they have been rediscovered again is in Djibouti, a country in the Horn of Africa.
You may question its features and appearance after hearing the name “Elephant Shrew”. Does it look like an elephant? Or, is it shrews? For both questions, the answers are: No.
In fact, the recently-rediscovered elephant shrews are small, short but have a signature long nose. They don’t relate to elephants, but people just imagine an elephant’s trunk when seeing an elephant shrew’s nose. That’s how they gave this animal such a special name.
Additionally, the elephant shrews were born with long and pinky tongues, similar to the kitten and hamster.
In some cases, when they open their mouth, it’s possible to misunderstand them as real hamsters or mice.
Scientists have conducted a list of research and experiments to keep track of shrews’ locations. To be specific, they have used more than one thousand traps in 12 separate spots. Then, the researchers provide peanut butter, yeast, and oatmeal to attract the animal.
“When we opened the first trap and saw the little tuft of hair on the tip of its tail, we just looked at one another and couldn’t believe it,”
Steven Heritage – research biologist at the Duke University Lemur Center answered the BBC.
“…we looked at each other, and we knew that it was something special. They are not well-known animals, but when you see them, it’s impossible not to adore them.”