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8 of the smallest animals of their kind

By: Katherine Butler on Sept. 26, 2011, 8:43 a.m.
Pygmy mouse lemur in tree

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

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Pygmy mouse lemur

The pygmy mouse lemur, or Microcebus myoxinus, is a primate weighing in at almost 2 ounces. Its head and body are just over 2 inches long, though its tail is around twice that length. It lives in Madagascar on the east coast of Africa and exists as a nocturnal animal. As National Geographic reports, Malagasy people have traditionally associated these primates with spirits because they are active at night, and perhaps because of their eerie, large-eyed stare.” They live in the forests in female-dominated groups of up to 15 lemurs. They can store up to 35 percent of their body fat in their hindquarters and tails. The pygmy mouse lemur is threatened by habitat loss in Madagascar and poachers, who capture them for the exotic animal trade.