What is Zaglossus attenboroughi?

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What is Zaglossus attenboroughi? Blog Image


An elusive echidna named ‘Zaglossus attenboroughi’, feared extinct after disappearing for six decades, has been rediscovered in a remote part of Indonesia.

About Zaglossus attenboroughi

  • Known as Attenborough’s long-beaked echidna (Zaglossus attenboroughi) or Sir David’s Long-beaked Echidna, the animal belongs to a small, unique group of egg-laying mammals called monotremes, which also includes the platypus.
  • It is named in honour of naturalist Sir David Attenborough.
  • It has never been recorded outside the extremely remote Cyclops Mountains of Indonesia's Papua region.
  • Features:
    • It is the smallest known species of long-beaked echidna, weighing between 5 and 10 kilograms.
    • They have five claws on each foot, and adult males have a small, non-venomous spur on the inside of each ankle. Adult females lack these spurs.
    • The fur is distinctive, short, fine, and dense, unlike other echidnas, and raw umber brown in color.
    • There is short fur that covers the few spines on the middle back of this species.
    • Adults have no teeth, but the tongue is covered in tooth-like spikes.
  • Conservation Status:
    • IUCN Red List: Critically Endangered
  • What are Echidnas? 
    • They are unique, quilled creatures with small eyes and a long nose.
    • Similar to hedgehogs, echidnas are spiny, nocturnal creatures that roll into a ball when they sense danger.
    • They are shy creatures that live in burrows and only meet others once a year during mating season.

Q1) What is platypus?

The platypus is a duck-billed, beaver-tailed, otter-footed, egg-laying aquatic creature native to Australia. Along with echidnas, Platypuses are grouped in a separate order of mammals known as monotremes, which are distinguished from all other mammals because they lay eggs.Male of the species is also one of the world’s few venomous mammals.

Source: Elusive Attenborough echidna rediscovered in Indonesia