Extinct Mammal Shows Up Alive! Poses for the Camera!

Earlier this month, a mammal thought to be extinct for 113 years suddenly showed up at the front door of an ecolodge in Colombia... alive!

extinct mammal
Credit: Conservation International

The Red-crested Tree Rat hasn't been seen since 1898 despite extensive searches. Yet on May 4, 2011 at around 9:30PM, the rodent - about the size of a guinea pig - totally unexpectedly showed up at El Dorado Nature Reserve, a facility established in 2005 by Fundacion ProAves.

Red-crested Tree Rat

"He just shuffled up the handrail near where we were sitting and seemed totally unperturbed by all the excitement he was causing," shares Lizzie Noble, a volunteer researcher at ProAves who - with fellow researcher, Simon McKeown - rediscovered the tiny mammal.

After staying in the ecolodge and posing for photos for nearly two hours, the rat quietly returned to the forest.

Incredible. Now, I know there's still hope for the woolly mammoth.

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