Mammals discovered in the 2000s
Although the mammal
Mammals are members of a class of air-breathing vertebrate animals characterised by the possession of endothermy, hair, three middle ear bones, and mammary glands functional in mothers with young...

are well studied in comparison to other animal groups, a number of new species are still being discovered. This list includes extant mammal
Mammals are members of a class of air-breathing vertebrate animals characterised by the possession of endothermy, hair, three middle ear bones, and mammary glands functional in mothers with young...

In biology, a species is one of the basic units of biological classification and a taxonomic rank. A species is often defined as a group of organisms capable of interbreeding and producing fertile offspring. While in many cases this definition is adequate, more precise or differing measures are...

 discovered, formally named, or brought to public light in the year 2000 or later. Notable subspecies
Subspecies in biological classification, is either a taxonomic rank subordinate to species, ora taxonomic unit in that rank . A subspecies cannot be recognized in isolation: a species will either be recognized as having no subspecies at all or two or more, never just one...

 are also included, as are mammals rediscovered after being declared, or seriously suspected to be, extinct.

Newly-discovered fossils are not included.


At least five new species of marsupials have been discovered since 2000: Philander deltae; Philander mondolfii; the Arfak Pygmy Bandicoot
Arfak Pygmy Bandicoot
The Arfak Pygmy Bandicoot is a species of marsupial in the Peramelidae family. It is endemic to the Arfak mountains in the Vogelkop Peninsula of West Papua, in Indonesia. Its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical moist montane forests....

, Microperoryctes aplini; the Mountain Brush-tailed Possum, Trichosurus caninus; and the Red-bellied Gracile Opossum
Red-bellied Gracile Opossum
The Red-bellied Gracile Opossum is an extinct species of opossum that was native to Jujuy Province, Argentina. Its forest habitat has been destroyed, and it was last seen in 1962....

, Cryptonanus ignitus.


In 2001, genetic evidence emerged that the African Elephant (Loxodonta africana), once thought to be a single species, was in fact two, as the smaller African Forest Elephant
African Forest Elephant
The African Forest Elephant is a forest dwelling elephant of the Congo Basin. Formerly considered either a synonym or a subspecies of the African Savanna Elephant , a 2010 study established that the two are distinct species...

 was in fact a distinct species (Loxodonta cyclotis). L. africana is now commonly referred to as the African Bush Elephant
African Bush Elephant
The African Bush Elephant or African Savanna Elephant is the larger of the two species of African elephant. Both it and the African Forest Elephant have usually been classified as a single species, known simply as the African Elephant...

. Strictly speaking, this is not a newly discovered species, but simply an alternative taxonomic treatment, as cyclotis already was widely recognized, but only as a subspecies
Subspecies in biological classification, is either a taxonomic rank subordinate to species, ora taxonomic unit in that rank . A subspecies cannot be recognized in isolation: a species will either be recognized as having no subspecies at all or two or more, never just one...



The Pygmy Three-toed Sloth
Pygmy Three-toed Sloth
The Pygmy Three-toed Sloth is a three-toed sloth. It is endemic to Isla Escudo de Veraguas, an island off the coast of Panama, which separated from the mainland nearly 8900 years ago. The species is thought to have originated from isolation of individuals from the mainland population of Bradypus...

 (Bradypus pygmaeus) was named in 2001, after its discovery in the mangrove
Mangroves are various kinds of trees up to medium height and shrubs that grow in saline coastal sediment habitats in the tropics and subtropics – mainly between latitudes N and S...

 swamps of Isla Escudo de Veraguas
Isla Escudo de Veraguas
Isla Escudo de Veraguas is a small isolated Caribbean island of the Republic of Panama. Despite its name, it is not part of the province of Veraguas, but rather Bocas del Toro...

, a tiny island off the western coast of Panama
Panama , officially the Republic of Panama , is the southernmost country of Central America. Situated on the isthmus connecting North and South America, it is bordered by Costa Rica to the northwest, Colombia to the southeast, the Caribbean Sea to the north and the Pacific Ocean to the south. The...

. They weigh 40% less than mainland sloth
Sloths are the six species of medium-sized mammals belonging to the families Megalonychidae and Bradypodidae , part of the order Pilosa and therefore related to armadillos and anteaters, which sport a similar set of specialized claws.They are arboreal residents of the jungles of Central and South...

s, are 20% smaller, and have a distinctive fringe of long hair.


Since 2000, at least 25 new species of primate have been described—16 lemur
Lemurs are a clade of strepsirrhine primates endemic to the island of Madagascar. They are named after the lemures of Roman mythology due to the ghostly vocalizations, reflective eyes, and the nocturnal habits of some species...

s and nine monkey
A monkey is a primate, either an Old World monkey or a New World monkey. There are about 260 known living species of monkey. Many are arboreal, although there are species that live primarily on the ground, such as baboons. Monkeys are generally considered to be intelligent. Unlike apes, monkeys...

s, including the Monkey Monkey
The Madidi titi, or the monkey is a titi, a kind of New World monkey, discovered in western Bolivia's Madidi National Park in 2004.-Distribution:...

 or Madidi titi, named by auction.


Three species of lagomorph have been discovered in the 21st century: the Black Pika
Black Pika
The Black Pika or Silver Pika is a species of mammal in the Ochotonidae family. It was thought to be endemic to Yunan Province of China where it was first discovered in 2000, it is only known from four specimens....

, Ochotona nigritia, the Venezuelan Lowland Rabbit
Venezuelan lowland rabbit
The Venezuelan lowland rabbit , also known as the Barinas wild rabbit, is a cottontail rabbit species found in western Venezuela. Its diet consists in large measure of plants of the genus Sida. It is found in lowland savannas close to dry forests within the Llanos ecoregion. It is the largest of...

, Sylvilagus varynaensis, and the Annamite Striped Rabbit
Annamite Striped Rabbit
The Annamite Striped Rabbit is a species of rabbit native to the Annamite mountain range on the Laos-Vietnam border. The rabbit is striped, with a red rump, and resembles the Sumatran Striped Rabbit. It only recently became known to Western scientists.- External links :* at* at...

, Nesolagus timminsi.


A number of rodents are described each year. Notable among those described since 2000 are the Cypriot mouse
Cypriot Mouse
The Cypriot mouse is a species of mouse native to Cyprus. Its primary habitat seems to be the vineyards and fields of the Troödos Mountains region....

, Mus cypriacus, and the Laotian rock rat
Laotian rock rat
The Laotian rock rat or kha-nyou , sometimes called the "rat-squirrel", is a rodent species of the Khammouan region of Laos. The species was first described in a 2005 article by Paulina Jenkins and coauthors, who considered the animal to be so distinct from all living rodents that they placed it...

, Laonastes aenigmamus, which represents a family (Diatomyidae
Diatomyidae is a family of hystricomorphous, sciurognathous rodents found in Asia. It is currently represented by a single known living species, Laonastes aenigmamus.- "Lazarus effect" :...

) thought to be extinct since the Miocene
The Miocene is a geological epoch of the Neogene Period and extends from about . The Miocene was named by Sir Charles Lyell. Its name comes from the Greek words and and means "less recent" because it has 18% fewer modern sea invertebrates than the Pliocene. The Miocene follows the Oligocene...

, and has been described as a living fossil
Living fossil
Living fossil is an informal term for any living species which appears similar to a species otherwise only known from fossils and which has no close living relatives, or a group of organisms which have long fossil records...



At least 30 new species of bat have been described since 2000. The new species were found in Africa, Latin America, Asia, Oceania, and Europe.

Even-toed ungulate
Even-toed ungulate
The even-toed ungulates are ungulates whose weight is borne about equally by the third and fourth toes, rather than mostly or entirely by the third as in odd-toed ungulates such as horses....


Since 2000, several new species of cetartiodactyl have been described, including three aquatic species (Australian Snubfin Dolphin
Australian Snubfin Dolphin
The Australian snubfin dolphin is a dolphin found off the northern coasts of Australia. It closely resembles the Irrawaddy dolphin and was not described as a separate species until 2005. The Australian snubfin is tri-coloured, while the Irrawaddy dolphin only has two colours on its skin...

, Perrin's Beaked Whale
Perrin's Beaked Whale
Perrin's beaked whale is the newest species of beaked whale to be described. The first two specimens were found in May 1975 stranded on the California coast, with two more specimens being found in 1978 and 1979, and the last in September 1997...

, and Balaenoptera omurai
Balaenoptera omurai
Omura's whale is a species of rorqual about which very little is known.The scientific description of this whale was made in the November 20, 2003, edition of Nature by three Japanese scientists, Shiro Wada, Masayuki Oishi and Tadasu K. Yamada...

) and three terrestrial ungulates (Roosevelt's muntjac
Roosevelt's muntjac
A single specimen of the Roosevelt's Muntjac or Roosevelt's barking deer was presented to the Field Museum in 1929 following a hunting expedition led by Theodore and Kermit Roosevelt. The specimen is slightly smaller than the common muntjac and DNA testing has shown it to be distinct from...

, Giant Forest Peccary
Giant Forest Peccary
The Giant Peccary is a possible fourth species of peccary, discovered in Brazil in 2000 by the Dutch naturalist Marc van Roosmalen. In 2003, he and German natural history filmmaker Lothar Frenz succeeded in filming a group and gathering material, which later would serve as the type...

 and Moschiola kathygre
Moschiola kathygre
The Yellow-striped Chevrotain is a newly discovered species of chevrotain named in 2005. It is found in the wet zones of Sri Lanka. It was recognized as a species distinct from Moschiola meminna based on the phylogenetic species concept....

). Additionally, the Northern Right Whale
Northern Right Whale
There are two species of Northern Right Whale:*North Pacific Right Whale *North Atlantic Right Whale...

, previously considered a single species, was proposed split into a Pacific and an Atlantic species.


Several new subspecies of previously known species were described. Additionally, an alternative taxonomic treatment of the Clouded Leopard was proposed, in which the taxon
|thumb|270px|[[African elephants]] form a widely-accepted taxon, the [[genus]] LoxodontaA taxon is a group of organisms, which a taxonomist adjudges to be a unit. Usually a taxon is given a name and a rank, although neither is a requirement...

 diardi, previously considered a subspecies of Neofelis nebulosa, was proposed a separate species, the Bornean Clouded Leopard
Bornean Clouded Leopard
The Sunda clouded leopard , also known as the Sundaland clouded leopard and is a medium-sized wild cat found in Borneo and Sumatra...

 (Neofelis diardi).

See also

  • Cat-fox
    The cat-fox is a possible new species of carnivoran discovered on the Indonesian part of the island of Borneo.It was first discovered by Swiss-based environmental group WWF in 2003, using a night-time camera trap in Kayan Mentarang National Park. The mammal is slightly larger than a cat, with red...

     a possible new carnivoran mammal discovered on Borneo
    Borneo is the third largest island in the world and is located north of Java Island, Indonesia, at the geographic centre of Maritime Southeast Asia....

  • List of mammals
  • List of megafauna discovered in modern times
  • List of mammals described in 21st century
  • Shrews and moles discovered in the 2000s

External links

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