Back from the dead-Extinction may not be the end.Friendo 35 comments
Now how often does this happen?
After being extinct for almost 113 years (Last seen in 1898) a Red Crested Tree Rat strolled into a building at a Nature Reserve in the Santa Marta Mountains of Columbia, South America. Why it’s almost as if Elvis had been found alive hanging out at a bar in Memphis.
Now for me, this is pretty exciting, as I have had many rats over the years. They make great low maintenance pets, and they are very smart. This Tree Rat is positively the cutest thing I have ever seen. I want one!
Very little is known about the Tree Rats. There is virtually no information about its preferred habitat, or behavior in the wild. After all how could there be, not only are these photos the first ever taken of the critter, but due to the reclusive nature of the rodent-not to mention that they have been “extinct” for 113 years-there is not much information to be found.
What must be all to obvious at this point is that the rat truly was NOT extinct, but just lying low for a century. (give or take)
The red-crested tree rat hadn't been seen by scientists for more than a century — until this May.
“The guinea pig-sized creature, with a fiery-red patch of fur on its head and a long, fuzzy black and white tail, was spotted by two conservationist volunteers working in Colombia.
One of the conservationists was Lizzie Noble. "We were just heading off to bed one evening," she tells NPR's Jennifer Ludden, "and it just crawled up the stairs toward us and just quite happily sat there and looked at us."
She snapped some photos of the fuzzy interloper, but had no idea quite how special his appearance was. She emailed the photos to Paul Salaman, director of conservation at the World Land Trust in Virginia.
"When I opened up the picture I was just ecstatic," he says. He instantly knew what it was — in fact, Salaman sent a team to look for the critter in 2007 in the El Dorado Reserve in northern Colombia.
The red-crested tree rat is so important because it's only found in the Sierra Nevadas, and because it's a taxonomic level."
He's absolutely sure Noble found the rat he's been looking for, and Noble's hopeful she'll see the little mammal again. Next they want to gather samples to test its DNA and determine the size of the population.” Source
Seriously, how often does this happen? What a treat this for animal lovers world wide. Perhaps there are other species laying in wait around the globe, just waiting for their time ro return. What a joyful story indeed.
Perhaps the Dodo will be next, and then, with any luck...Elvis.