Unveiling the life of the world’s smallest mammal

It is considered the smallest mammal in the world and is so small that even if you met it, you probably wouldn't see it. It lives in the caves of Myanmar and Thailand and unfortunately is threatened by humans and risks extinction and its nose looks like that of a pig. Its name is Bumblebee Bat or Craseonycteris thonglongyai

It is considered the smallest mammal in the world and is also very rare to encounter. However, even if you went searching for it, you would likely struggle to see it.

The world’s smallest mammal

Let me immediately share some details about its physical appearance: it measures 1.10 to 1.34 inches in length, roughly the size of half a striped pen, and weighs between 0.07 and 0.11 ounces. It has a tiny nose resembling that of a pig, is winged, and covered in fur.

Where does the world’s smallest mammal live

Its habitat consists of caves near rivers, where it spends most of its time in groups ranging from 4 to 100 individuals, well spaced apart from each other. It can be found only in 8 caves in Myanmar and 44 caves in Thailand.

The world’s smallest mammal and extinction

The International Union for Conservation of Nature, IUCN, which categorizes the extinction risk of various animal species, reports that there are only 10,000 individuals left, and their numbers are continually decreasing. For this reason, it is considered to be nearly threatened with extinction, obviously due to our actions which destroy its habitat and disturb it with tourism.

Life of the world’s smallest mammal

The females of the world’s smallest mammal give birth to only one offspring per year around late April.

The world’s smallest mammal leaves its cave to feed for only 30/40 minutes at sunset and dawn. It feeds on insects, such as moths and beetles, which it can locate up to 1km away using a specialized echolocation system: it emits sounds and, based on the echoes that return, it determines where its prey is and catches them in flight.

The name of the world’s smallest mammal is the Bumblebee Bat, or Kitti’s Hog-nosed Bat, also known scientifically as Craseonycteris thonglongyai.

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