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New Rodent Species Discovered on Philippine Mountain E-mail
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Sunday, 16 October 2005
New Rodent Species Discovered on Philippine Mountain


A new species of unusual tweezer-beaked rodent has been discovered on a mountain in the northern Philippines, a national museum official said.

Weighing 140 grams (five ounces) and sporting a long snout with tiny teeth, the gray rodent found atop Mount Tapulao northwest of Manila belongs to the Rhynchomys family, more commonly called tweezer-beaks, which is endemic to the main Philippine island of Luzon.

Two other tweezer-beak species of rodents are known to exist in Luzon, one in the Cordillera mountain range in the north and the other on Mount Isarog on the Bicol peninsula, Josefa Veluz of the museum's zoology department told AFP.

The Mount Tapulao mammal, which is known to eat earthworms, was found last January by a joint US-Filipino research team during a biodiversity survey of small mammals in Zambales province.

A sample of the newly discovered species will be sent to the United States for further study at Chicago's field museum, Veluz said. It will be scientifically described and named in a scientific publication next year, she added.

© Copyright Agence France Presse

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