On Friday I gave you a specimen that I had to identify myself earlier in the week:
The first steps of this identification are quite straight-forward – in the words of Jake it “Looks a bit sheepy and a bit deery” which pins this firmly in the order Bovidae. Dave Godfrey neatly summarised what makes it look sheepy and deery – “Diastema, lack of upper incisors, and the shape of the teeth“. Rob went a step further and ruled out deer, sheep, goats and camelids – coming to the conclusion that this is an African bovid of some kind. Then David Craven blasted through the narrowing-down process and hit upon the same species as I had concluded it was, namely a Bush or Common Duiker Sylvicapra grimmia Ogilby, 1837.
I must admit that I think this could also possibly be an Ader’s Duiker Cephalophus adersi Thomas, 1918 but the size and the shape of the forehead preclude it being any other Duiker that I can think of. I will admit to relying on the excellent Mammals of Tanzania skull key by the Field Museum to help with my identification – plus access to other Duikers in the collections at the Horniman – which is how I worked out it wasn’t one of the Duiker’s suggested by Raymond Ho (who came so very close).
This Friday I may present another species from box NH.83.1 – but let’s see what my week holds in store, in case there’s something else that catches my eye…