Monday, November 04, 2013

Solenodon paradoxus

Believe it or not, this little chap is a mammal. Sure, he's ratlike (belonging to the order Soricomorpha, mouselike, which includes shrews and moles), and to be sure he's not beautiful. But he is amazing. The solenodon is an ancient beast, the only mammal known to have survived the dinosaur cataclysm. It is a little known creature, found only on the Caribbean island of Hispaniola, and on Cuba. He defends himself by spitting poison, he has a ball-and-socket joint in his nose and, they say, finds his prey by echolocation.
Why am I telling you this? Because it's important to realise that you don't have to be beautiful to be interesting. I find that a comforting thought as my ageing face slowly collapses into wrinkly decrepitude.

No comments: