The new EDGE mammals list has arrived! Latest research reveals a staggering 49 new species on the EDGE of Existence.
New entries to the top 100 include the Rondo dwarf galago which, weighing in at just 60 grams is the smallest of the galagos (bushbabies). It is also the most threatened, having the dubious accolade of being one of the world’s 25 most endangered primates. Joining the galago is the Chinese pangolin which, unusually for a mammal, is covered in scales, which are formed from fused hair and contribute to a quarter of the species’ total weight.
EDGE researchers have painstakingly scored almost every mammal species on the planet according to the amount of unique evolutionary history it represents (Evolutionary Distinctiveness, or ED), and its conservation status (Global Endangerment, or GE). The two scores are combined together to produce an overall EDGE score. The more unique and threatened the species, the higher its score.
We highlight the 100 highest scoring species here.
Always wishing to be at the “cutting edge” of conservation science, we have drawn on the latest research to update our 2007 EDGE mammals list for 2010:
A lot has changed over the past three years. Some species (e.g. long-beaked echidnas) have become more threatened, while others (e.g. bumblebee bats) have become less so. Knowledge about the evolutionary relationships between species has also advanced, and several newly discovered species have, for the first time, been included in the mammal supertree, from which the ED scores are derived.
Among them is the newly discovered Kha-nyou, the sole surviving member of an ancient group of rodents that had previously been considered extinct for some 11 million years, and the saola, a rare and beautiful Asian mammal that was, incredibly, completely unknown to western science until less than 20 years ago.
Despite their differences in physical appearance all these species have something in common, they are on the verge of extinction and if action is not taken now, these incredible, strange and beautiful creatures could be lost forever. You can learn more these species and how we plan to help conserve them by visiting the Conserving Mammals section.
To help support the conservation of EDGE mammals you can donate here.