Mouse Deer Shows Up Thirty Years Later

November 26, 2019
Uspn (Bjørn Christian Tørrissen). [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)]
What happens when you see something that you never ever thought you’d see? You do a double take, right? Well, we would, and that’s probably what some scientists did recently when their cameras recorded a small creature moving about in the Vietnamese forest. What was this creature? It was the silver-backed chevrotain, otherwise known as a two-tone mouse deer—an animal that has not been seen in the last thirty years. Exciting, we know! Scientists are working quickly to keep these animals from going extinct once again. While it’s likely that larger animals such as boars hunt these small creatures, scientists believe that the silver-backed chevrotain were driven to near extinction from hunter’s traps. The discovery of these creatures has given scientists hope that other animals believed to be extinct are actually still around. If you could suggest some ways to help protect the silver-backed chevrotain, what would they be? Interesting Fact: The silver-backed chevrotain is neither a mouse nor a deer. Despite its appearance, it’s actually considered the world’s smallest ungulate, or hoofed animal, and measures to be about the size of an average rabbit.