Elephant Shrews Aren't "True" Shrews

Announcement: the Curiosity Podcast is finally here! Subscribe on iTunes here, Google Play Music here and add the RSS feed to your favorite podcast player. If you love it please consider leaving us a review.

When they first discovered sengis, biologists (understandably) grouped the small mammals in with shrews. They named them elephant shrews because of their long noses, which resemble an elephant's trunk. However, molecular evidence has prompted modern biologists to put elephant shrews in the superorder Afrotheria, which also includes elephants, dugongs, hyraxes, and aardvarks.

Share the knowledge!

Key Facts In This Video

  1. Elephant shrews are more closely related to elephants, aardvarks, and dugongs than they are to other shrews. 00:36

  2. The Etendeka round-eared sengi is the smallest of the elephant shrews. 01:27

  3. Scientists theorize that the Etendeka round-eared sengi uses a gland on its tail to leave scent markers around its large home range. 01:35