It is rare for new mammals to be discovered.  Up to two types of moles are found in Türkiye

An international team of scientists has discovered two new species of mole. These animals live in eastern Türkiye and are very heat tolerant. As the study authors themselves note, the discovery of new species of mammals is extremely rare.

Researchers from Turkey, the USA and the UK not only discovered two new types of moles, but also established that they are biologically far from other known representatives of these animals.

very durable

Both new types – Talpa hakkariensis I Talpa davidiana tatvanensis They live in the mountains in eastern Türkiye. They are able to withstand temperatures of up to 50 °C in the summer, and spend the winter buried under a two-meter layer of snow.

Information about this discovery was published in the academic journal “Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society”.

One of the study’s authors, Prof. David Belton of the University of Plymouth, who in his career has discovered nearly 80 new species of animals, mainly insects.

Separate yet similar

– We know about 6.5 thousand species of mammals. For comparison – we know about 400,000 species of ladybugs, and it is estimated that there are from one to two million species of them. Externally, the newly discovered moles look similar to the already known species due to the fact that underground evolution imposes significant restrictions on body shape and size. In fact, moles have very few options in this regard. Our study shows how easy it is to underestimate the importance of biodiversity, especially among mammals, which many people assume we already know about all the species that live on our planet. Belton.

Thanks to this discovery, the number of known species of moles living in Eurasia has increased from 16 to 18, each with different characteristics.

In addition to analyzing the shape and size of the body of the tested animals, the scientists also analyzed their DNA and compared it with that of the already known moles, thanks to which they established the separation of the newly discovered species.

We have no doubt that future research will reveal more diversity. More and more attention is being paid to the need to protect biodiversity, but in order to protect species, we must first know about their existence – concluded the prof. Belton.

Main image source: stock struggle

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