Weird Wildlife Wednesday: the Olinguito


The Olinguito (Bassaricyon neblina) is the first carnivore to be discovered in 35 years! This little guy looks like a cuddly teddy bear and is thought to max out at a weight of 2lbs. They were discovered to live in Columbia and Ecuador in the cloud forests. Olinguito are related to raccoons and are actually now the smallest known member of that family. While they have only recently been named and identified, museum specimens show that they were found and lumped in with a similar species for years until Kristofer Helgen noticed there was something different. After conducting a 10 year study from 2003 to 2013, he found they were a completely different species, and also have four subspecies within their range. It is very rare anymore to discover new mammals, and even rarer to discover new carnivorous mammals.ย 


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