Seven New Species of Forest Mice
Seven New Species of Forest Mice: A) Apomys zambalensis, (B) Apomys brownorum, (C and D) Apomys sierrae (from Mt. Cetaceo and Mt. Palali, respectively), (E) Apomys minganensis, and (D) Apomys banahao sp. nov., and (E) Apomys magnus sp. nov. to the same scale (F) Apomys aurorae spp. nov., to the same scale.
The formal descriptions of the forest mice species (Genus Apomys) were authored by biologists from the University of the Philippines (UP), the Philippine National Museum, Conservation International– Philippines, Utah Museum of Natural History and Florida State University (FSU) and published in the May 2011 issue of “Fieldiana,” the peer-review journal of the Chicago Field Museum of Natural History (FMNH).
“Fieldiana” lead author and project leader Dr. Lawrence Heaney of FMNH said that the species were “wonderful little mice that live in forested regions high in the mountain… often abundant, [yet] they actively avoid humans and rarely cause any harm. They prefer to eat earthworms and seeds on the forest floor.”
Of the seven new species, two are endemic to Mt. Tapulao in Zambales, two in Mt. Banahaw, three in the Mingan Mountains of Aurora province, while others also reside in the Sierra Madre mountain range of northeast Luzon.