Colombian weasel

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Colombian weasel
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Carnivora
Family: Mustelidae
Genus: Mustela
Species:
M. felipei
Binomial name
Mustela felipei
Izor and de la Torre, 1978
Colombian Weasel area.png
Colombian weasel range

The Colombian weasel (Mustela felipei), is a very rare type of weasel. It is also called the Don Felipe's weasel. It is only known from the departments of Huila and Cauca in Colombia and nearby northern Ecuador. The Colombian weasel is only known from one Colombian weasel.[2][3]

It only lives in riparian habitats at an altitude of 1,100 to 2,700 m (3,600 to 8,900 ft). There is lots of deforestation in the riparian habitats in the northern Andes of Colombia and Ecuador. There is less than 10 known dead Colombian weasels that were studied.[4] It is could be the rarest carnivore in South America. It is a vulnerable species.[3]

It is the second-smallest living carnivore on average. The upperparts and tail are blackish-brown, while the underparts are orange-buff.[5][4]

The first photo of a living Colombian weasel was taken in 2011 by an amateur naturalist who found one trapped in his parents' house; the weasel later escaped. The image was uploaded to iNaturalist in 2018. It gained widespread attention.[6]

Description[change | change source]

The Colombian weasel has a long body. It has an average length of 22 cm (8.7 in). Its tail is 11.5 cm (4.5 in) long. It weighs between 120 and 150 g (4.2 and 5.3 oz). The Colombian weasel has a dark dorsal color. It also has a light orange color. The bottom of the feet does not have any fur. It has webbed feet that is found on the second, third, and fourth toes.[7]

Feeding[change | change source]

The Colombian weasel is a carnivore. It mainly hunts fish, other small aquatic animals, and small terrestrial mammals.

References[change | change source]

  1. Emmons, L.; Helgen, K. (2008). "Mustela felipei". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN. 2008. Retrieved 21 March 2009. Unknown parameter |last-author-amp= ignored (help)CS1 maint: ref=harv (link) Database entry includes a brief justification of why this species is vulnerable
  2. Eisenberg, John F.; Redford, Kent H. (1989). Mammals of the Neotropics, Volume 3: Ecuador, Bolivia, Brazil. University of Chicago Press. ISBN 978-0-226-19542-1.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Group), José González-Maya (IUCN SSC Small Carnivore Specialist; Kristofer Helgen (Division of Mammals, National Museum of Natural History; Emmons, Louise; Arias-Alzate (UNAM), Andres (2016-02-10). "IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: Mustela felipei". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 2020-09-01.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Nowak, Ronald M. (1999). Walker's mammals of the world (Sixth edition ed.). Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. ISBN 0-8018-5789-9. OCLC 39045218. |edition= has extra text (help)
  5. Hunter, Luke. (2011). Carnivores of the world. Barrett, Priscilla. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. ISBN 978-0-691-15228-8. OCLC 724663784.
  6. "Man Takes First-Ever Photo of Living Colombian Weasel After Finding It Standing on His Toilet". Gizmodo. Retrieved 2020-09-01.
  7. Chaves, Héctor E. Ramírez; Patterson, Bruce D (2014-08-08). "Mustela felipei (Carnivora: Mustelidae)". Mammalian Species. 906: 11–15. doi:10.1644/906. ISSN 0076-3519.