Scientists have found a mole that was last seen in 1936. The De Winton’s golden mole was thought to be extinct until a team of scientists using environmental DNA came across traces of the mole’s DNA in sand dunes in South Africa. This elusive mole, with its shiny golden coat and unique subterranean lifestyle, has resurfaced to rewrite its narrative in conservation history.
eDNA Found The Lost Mole
Harnessing the power of environmental DNA (eDNA), a team led by the Endangered Wildlife Trust has cracked the code to tracking elusive species. eDNA, the genetic material left behind as animals traverse their habitats, provided the key to finding the golden mole. This breakthrough not only paves the way for the mole’s conservation but also revolutionizes the search for other species considered extinct.
De Winton’s Golden Mole
The golden mole’s rediscovery is a testament to its remarkable adaptability. Living a life in darkness, these creatures have developed extraordinary hearing to detect the faintest vibrations, navigating their sandy world with precision. With muscular builds and paddle-like limbs, they almost seem to swim in the sand.
Securing a Future for the Golden Mole
The search for the De Winton’s golden mole was not just a search for a species; it was a campaign to safeguard its future. Amidst growing threats from residential development and mining, securing the mole’s habitat has become an urgent conservation priority. This endeavor is not just about studying the mole but ensuring its continued existence in a rapidly changing world.
A Beacon of Hope for Biodiversity
The three-year journey to rediscover the golden mole serves as an important reminder that discovery and conservation are still possible in our time. This story of hope resonates even more as it parallels the recent finding of Attenborough’s long-beaked echidna in Indonesia, another species that stepped out from the shadows of extinction.
The Golden Mole’s Return: A Conservation Milestone
The successful identification of the De Winton’s golden mole is a milestone for conservation, highlighting the potential to uncover more of the planet’s hidden biodiversity. It represents a triumph for the Search for Lost Species project, which seeks to rediscover lost species and spotlight the resilience of nature.
In short, the rediscovery of the De Winton’s golden mole is not just a single event but a chapter in a larger narrative of conservation, technology, and the resilience of the natural world.
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