What are the 6 smallest mammals in the world?

Mammals are the animals that form the class mammalia. Its most striking characteristic, and which gives its name to this taxonomic group, is the presence of milk-producing mammary glands with which they feed the young.

Class mammalia It has a great biological diversity, despite the fact that the number of known species is much lower than that of other animal taxa, which has made them able to adapt to habitats all over the planet and to be one of the dominant groups of animals.

Among the mammals is the largest animal that has existed in the entire history of the Earth, the fin or blue whale (Balaenoptera musculus), at least the largest that is known. And also among them is the largest land animal in existence today, the african bush elephant (African loxodonta).

On the opposite side, among mammals there are also very small species, although they do not reach even the smallest animal. Here are the six smallest mammals:

pygmy possums

The pygmy possums (family Burramyidae) are some small marsupials of the order of the diprotodontos, the same order to which the kangaroos, the koalas or the wombats belong. The best known are the species of the genus fence yourbecause of the other existing gender (Burramys) only one species lives today.

the species Cercartetus nanusknown as eastern pygmy possum, is native to Australia and is one of the smallest possums. It has a length that can vary between 5 and 10 cm and a weight that can range from 10 to 45 grams.

Like the rest of the possums, or phalageriformes (family Phalangeriformes), are nocturnal animals that climb trees using their tails. Possums are native to Australia, Papua New Guinea, and the Celebes Islands of Indonesia. During the winter they go into hibernation.

american shrew mole

American shrew mole, Neurotrichus gibbsiiIt is the only living species of the genus neurotrichus. It is native to the forests of the northwestern United States and southwestern British Columbia (Canada). It has an approximate weight of around 10 g and a length of 6 to 8 cm, including the tail.

They are not closely related to the shrew moles of Asia, the genus uropsilusbut like all moles, they are adapted to life underground and have long, sharp claws for digging, although the American shrew mole frequently goes outside and even climbs small trees and bushes to hunt for insects.

pygmy jerboa

Gerbils are small rodents that live in the deserts of Africa and Asia. The pygmy gerbil can refer to several species, including Salpingotulus michaelis Y Salpingotus crassicauda. They weigh about 3 grams and measure about five centimeters; although its tail can reach 8 cm.

dwarf shrew

The shrew, dwarf shrew or Etruscan shrew (suncus etruscus), weighs only 2g and its body can measure between 3.5 and 5 cm, with a tail approximately 1/3 of the body, it can reach just over 6 cm in total. They are widely distributed in southern Europe and northern Africa, in parts of Arabia and the Near East, and in southern and central Asia.

Despite its small size, it has a voracious appetite. Each day he can eat more than twice his weight in food. His metabolism is so fast that his heart can reach 25 beats per secondabout 1500 per minute.

pig-nosed bat

Although it appears in second place, the hog-nosed bat or botfly bat (Craseonycteris thonglongyai), it is the smallest mammal in the world. It barely reaches 2 g in weight and measures between 2.5 and 3.5 cm approximately (specimens between 29 and 33 mm have been recorded).

this bat, discovered in 1974 by zoologist Kitti Thonglongya, lives in limestone caves located in forests of a small region in western Thailand and southeastern Burma. The Union for Conservation of Nature classifies it as a endangered specie due to the deforestation of their habitat.

mouse lemur

Mouse lemurs (genus microcebus) are not the smallest mammals but deserve special mention for being the smallest primates, the smallest of the order to which the human being belongs. 24 species are known, the smallest being the Berthe's mouse lemur (M.berthae) that measures around 10 cm (not including the tail) and weighs around 30 g. Like all lemurs, they are endemic to Madagascar.

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