BOULDER, Colo. (AP) – Researchers from the University of Colorado have discovered the fossil of a 2-inch-long hedgehog from 52 million years ago.
The university announced the discovery Tuesday, saying it happened recently in British Columbia during a trip by a Boulder-led team. The university says it’s perhaps the tiniest hedgehog species ever.
The hedgehog’s scientific name is silvacola acares. CU associate professor Jaelyn Eberle says that means “tiny forest dweller.” She says the hedgehog likely fed on insects, plants and seeds, but it’s unclear if it had quills like the contemporary hedgehog.
The university says the discovery happened in north-central British Columbia at a place called Driftwood Canyon Provincial Park. Eberle says it was likely a rainforest environment 52 million years ago.
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