Little Swan Island hutia

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Little Swan Island hutia
Geocapromys thoracatus (Harvard University).JPG

Extinct  (1955) (IUCN 3.1)[1]
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Rodentia
Suborder: Hystricomorpha
Family: Capromyidae
Genus: Geocapromys
Species: G. thoracatus
Binomial name
Geocapromys thoracatus
(True, 1888)

The Little Swan Island hutia (Geocapromys thoracatus) is an extinct species of rodent that lived on the Swan Islands, off north-eastern Honduras in the Caribbean. It was a slow-moving, guinea-pig-like rodent and probably emerged from caves and limestone crevices to forage on bark, small twigs and leaves.

It may have been a subspecies of the Jamaican hutia (Geocapromys browni), whose ancestors were carried to the island from Jamaica, 5000–7000 years ago. It was fairly common in the early 20th century, but disappeared after a severe hurricane (Hurricane Janet) in 1955, followed by the introduction of house cats to the island.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Turvey, S. & Helgen, K. (2008). "Geocapromys thoracatus". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2008. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 5 January 2009. 
  • 'A Gap in Nature' by Tim Flannery and Peter Schouten (2001), published by William Heinemann