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Re: Platypuses may be older than we think...

> This next quoted sentence puzzles rather than
> entertains:
> "Since no other mammal, including echidnas, can
> surpass the electro-detection abilities of the
> platypus, researchers had thought this was a
> relatively new skill that the animal evolved."
> As water conducts electricity better than air does,
> it'd be surprising if echidnas could manage the same
> levels of this here electro-detection.  More
> interesting is that these terrestrial critters are
> apparently* rigged up for this art.  Both the long-
> and the short-beaked echidnas have
> electro-receptors, with New Guniea's long-beaked
> ones being the more talented of the pair in this
> regard.  I can't think of any particular use these
> abilities might provide for terrestrial echidnas,
> but perhaps there's something lacking in my
> imagination.

Might work reasonably well enough to detect
invertebrate prey in moist soil.


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