Round-eared Elephant Shrew Facts
|Size||3.9-4.3 in (10-11 cm) (body); 3.9-5.5 in (10-14 cm) (tail)|
|Weight||1-1.7 oz (30-50 g)|
|Habitat||Southern Botswana, Western South Africa, Namibia|
|Scientific name||Macroscelides proboscideus|
|Characteristics||Trunk-like snout, prolonged hind legs|
A Mouse With A Trunk?
Nonsense! The round-eared elephant shrew is also called short-eared elephant shrew, but it is no mouse. The round-eared elephant shrew belongs to the family of elephant shrews and not, like the mouse, to the family of murids.
Like a Rabbit
Similar to the rabbit, the round-eared elephant shrew digs a den with several exits to be able to escape in case an enemy is lying in wait outside. However, the den of the round-eared elephant shrew is much shorter than that of a rabbit.
Round-eared elephant shrews are solitary animals. They are only looking for a partner during the mating season. Every round-eared elephant shrew inhabits its own territory, which covers about 0.38 square miles (1 km2).
Round-eared elephant shrews have rather short ears compared to other elephant shrews. And they are the smallest representatives of their family and order. But they are the best-known of all elephant shrews. Little VIPs in a way.
Elephant or Mouse?
For a long time, people were not sure if the round-eared elephant shrew is more closely related to the mouse or to the elephant. A genetic test made things clear: Round-eared elephant shrews are more closely related to the elephant. Of course, the relationship is rather complex and intricate. Really surprising if you compare the size and weight of the round-eared elephant shrew to that of an elephant.
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