Dwarf hutia

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Dwarf hutia

Critically endangered, possibly extinct (IUCN 3.1)[1]
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Rodentia
Suborder: Hystricomorpha
Family: Capromyidae
Genus: Mesocapromys
Species: M. nanus
Binomial name
Mesocapromys nanus
(G. M. Allen, 1917)

The dwarf hutia (Mesocapromys nanus) is known only from Cuba.[2] It was last seen in 1937.[1]

The hutias are heavily built guinea pig-like rodents with broad rounded heads. They have relatively small eyes and short rounded ears. The average tail and body length of this hutia is unknown. Some hutias have prehensile tails, meaning they are able to use them for gripping and climbing.[3] Unlike the larger litter sizes of many other rodents, the dwarf hutia gave birth to only a single offspring.

The dwarf hutia became critically endangered due to loss of habitat and the introduction of mongooses. The discovery of tracks and droppings in the Zapata Swamp gives hopes that this species has survived. It was initially described based on fossil material, but was later found to be extant.[2]


  1. ^ a b Soy, J. & Silva, G. (2008). "Mesocapromys nanus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2008. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 6 January 2009. 
  2. ^ a b Woods, C.A.; Kilpatrick, C.W. (2005). "Infraorder Hystricognathi". In Wilson, D.E.; Reeder, D.M. Mammal Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference (3rd ed.). Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 1538–1600. ISBN 978-0-8018-8221-0. OCLC 62265494. 
  3. ^ Glenn, C. R. 2006. "Earth's Endangered Creatures" (Online). Accessed 6/23/2010 at http://earthsendangered.com.