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Warsaw zoo. They have one father and five mothers, they are elephant cousins. The birth of 10 highlanders

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10 hyraxes – small furry mammals that are cousins ​​of elephants – were born in the Warsaw zoo. They have one father but five different mothers. As their guardians say, from the first moments of life, little highlanders are very independent. They are already jumping on rocks and branches together with adults.

The Warsaw Zoo announced on social media that in July and August the family of rock hyraxes that lives in the garden increased by 10 individuals. The happy father is a male whose guardians call Chakalaka. There are five mothers. already experienced in births Gambia and Uganda.

“As the guardians say, children from the first moments of their lives are very independent, so you can admire them jumping on rocks and branches together with adults” – the zoo said.

Read also: Meet the hyrax: it’s a rhino, an elephant and a horse in one body

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Kinship with elephants

Hyraxes have thick fur with a very short, small tail. Most of them are the size of a domestic cat. They weigh from two to five kilograms. Seen from a distance, they can easily be mistaken for well-fed rabbits or guinea pigs. They live in Africa and the western part of Asia. Hyraxes in captivity live to be seven years old. Scientists see the kinship of hyraxes with elephants and coastal whales. These animals, like elephants, have vestigial hooves, elastic pads under their feet, excellent hearing, good memory, and developed brain functions compared to other closely related mammals. Their testicles do not descend into the scrotum. Some hyrax and elephant bones are similar in shape. Although both hyraxes and elephants belong to the same clade (a group of organisms with a common ancestor – PAP) called afrotheres, they are not the closest placentals in terms of evolution. Hyraxes and elephants are closer to mermaids than to each other.

Main photo source: Facebook/Warsaw ZOO, Kate Oleszczuk

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