Tarsier

Tarsier.

Tarsiers are haplorrhine primates of the family Tarsiidae, which is itself the lone extant family within the infraorder Tarsiiformes. Although the group was once more widespread, all the species living today are found in the islands of Southeast Asia. Fossils of tarsiiform primates are found in Asia, Europe, and North America, with disputed fossils from Africa, but surviving tarsiers are restricted to several Southeast Asian islands, including the Philippines, Malaysia, and Indonesia. They are small animals with enormous eyes; each eyeball is approximately 16 mm in diameter and is as large as its entire brain. Tarsiers have an incredibly strong auditory sense because their auditory cortex is very distinct. Philippine tarsiers are capable of hearing frequencies as high as 91 kHz. They are also capable of vocalizations with a dominant frequency of 70 kHz. They also have very long hind limbs, due mostly to the extremely elongated tarsus bones of the feet, from which the animals get their name, and enabling them for vertical clinging and leaping. The head and body range from 10 to 15 cm in length, but the hind limbs are about twice this long, and they also have a slender tail from 20 to 25 cm long. Their fingers are also elongated, with the third finger being about the same length as the upper arm. Most of the digits have nails, but the second and third toes of the hind feet bear claws instead, which are used for grooming. Tarsiers have very soft, velvety fur, which is generally buff, beige, or ochre in colour. These creatures are the only carnivorous primates: primarily insectivorous, and catch insects by jumping at them. They are also known to prey on birds, snakes, lizards, and bats. Credit: Wikipedia.