Mouse Thought Extinct for Over a Century Makes a Reappearance

Comparing DNA samples from eight extinct Australian rodents,
researchers in Australia have discovered that a mouse thought extinct for over 150 years still exists.

Scientists in Australia have discovered that a mouse thought extinct for over 150 years still exists.

Comparing DNA samples from eight extinct Australian rodents, as well as 42 of their living relatives, researchers determined that the extinct Gould’s mouse was indistinguishable from the Shark Bay mouse still found on several small islands off the coast of Western Australia, according to a study published in the journal PNAS.

The discovery is part of a larger examination into the decline of native species since the arrival of Europeans in Australia.

Lead author Emily Roycroft with the Australian National University declared the find “good news” in the face of the disproportionally high rate of native rodent extinction since European colonization in 1788.


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