For the first time in 35 years, scientists have found a new carnivorous mammal in the Americas -- and it's sort of cute and cuddly looking, too.
The olinguito (oh-lin-GHEE-toe), which Smithsonian scientists describe as a "mix of house cat and a teddy bear," isn't really either of the two, but instead part of the family Procyonidae, which includes raccoons, olingos, and other small animals with long tails. The Smithsonian team published the discovery in the August 15 edition of the scientific journal ZooKeys.
A native of the high-elevation forests in Colombia and Ecuador, the orange-brown furred olinguito commonly weighs around two pounds, measures 14 inches long, moves among trees at nighttime, and noshes on fruit. … Read more