Anti-Caturday: The Ghost in the Jungle

Tarsier eyes by Erwin Bolwidt
Tarsier eyes by Erwin Bolwidt

By all counts Tarsiers should be cute as buttons. They’re small creatures with huge eyes. Each of their eyes are in fact as large as their brains. But there’s something decidedly creepy about the little buggers. Which is probably why they’re called ghost animals in Finnish. They’re primates in the Haplorhini, or dry-nosed, clade which means they’re a very distant relative of ours. In fact, Tarsiers are quite different from all other primates, having apparently separated quite a long while ago. Even their brain is different from all other primates.

Tarsiers are the only remaining completely carnivorous primate species. Mainly they eat insects, leaping on them in the night, but are also known to eat lizards, birds and bats. Their night-vision is apparently very keen despite the fact that their eyes differ from all other nocturnal creatures’s eyes. They can jump from tree to tree and even catch birds mid-flight. Death comes silently in the night. No wonder we call them ghost animals.

Tarsier in Bohol by Roberto Verzo
Tarsier in Bohol by Roberto Verzo
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