Written by Mark Lowton
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Topics: evolution, Ferrets

Thursday, 12 April 2007

image for Scientists Discover new Species
A juvenile Psarigi feasting on ferrets

Scientists have recently discovered a new species the Psarigi (or Land Fish). It is believed this is a prehistoric animal which has evaded the evolutionary process and is a direct descendent of most living mammals.

Little is known about this new species. It has both gills and lungs, however its gills are non-functioning and the animal cannot survive underwater. The creature does not have limbs and moves in an ungainly manner by 'flapping' on the ground.

The Psarigi species is thought to be a subclass of the Dipnoi (Lungfish) and a superclass of the Tetrapod. Its origins are placed around 400 million years BC. It was discovered thriving in a remote part of Bangladesh.

The Land Fish's diet consists mainly of molluscs. It devours shelled molluscs whole and scientists believe it transforms the calcium and proteins from the shell into a tough coating for its scaly underbelly. The Land Fish has also been observed to eat larger, more feisty creatures, including mice, guinea pigs and ferrets (pictured).

An adult Land Fish is green in colour and measures around 4ft (1.2m) in length, but can expand to 6ft, and turn bright red, when threatened.

Early tests show this creature exhibits similar genetic traits with lawyers and bankers.

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