LAST UP: #8 seed Musk Deer (Moschus moschiferus) vs #9 seed Aoudad (Ammotragus lervia) #2021MMM A silver grey deer with no antlers but prominent tusks protrHead shot of a large brown sheep with backward bending ridge
Tonight's battle is a team effort by @am_anatiala @Mammals_Suck @sexchrlab @AnneWHilborn & me! [gif of man throwing confetti with text saying teamwork make the dream work] #Teamwork #Dreamwork #2021MMM
@am_anatiala @Mammals_Suck @sexchrlab @AnneWHilborn The Musk Deer, Moschus moschiferus, is not a true deer. They are the only surviving member of a group called Moschidae. DNA analyses show musk deer clustering next to the group with cattle (Bos) & Sheep (Ovis): #NotADeer #2021MMM Phylogeny showing several species of musk deer, including Mo
@am_anatiala @Mammals_Suck @sexchrlab @AnneWHilborn Sometimes called Count Ungulata (@am_anatiala , 2021, this volume), the Musk Deer has a peculiar boys-only decoration: fang-like tusks, which take the place of antlers. This fang-tastic animal is found in mountain forests from southern Siberia to the Korean peninsula. #2021MMM Range map from IUCN Red list showing musk deer occurring fro
Weighing almost 17 kg (~78 stoats!), the Musk Deer really likes lichen! Up to 70% of its winter diet can be the algae-fungus symbiont (here's another similar relationship in the deep sea!…) #2021MMM #StoatsAsMeasurement
Coming in at up to 8x heavier than the Musk Deer is the Aoudad (659 stoats or 145 kg)! While native to the mountains of north Africa, it has been introduced to Europe & southwest America (Gray & Simpson 1980) #2021MMM #StoatsAsMeasurement Two part map showing that Ammotragus lervis is endemic in no
Aoudad, Ammotragus lervia, has sometimes mistakenly been classified as a sheep, but it is actually more closely related to goats #NotASheep #2021MMM Phylogenetic tree of Y chromosome sequences showing aoudad i
The Aoudad is also a fan of lichens, in addition to grasses and bushes. A true desert animal, it is able to get all the water it needs from the food it eats. #2021MMM An Auodad looks directly at the camera. The background is bl
Tonight both hooved mammals find themselves in the Golden Mountains of Altai, a @UNSECO World Heritage Site in southern Siberia protecting endangered species like snow leopards & fragile habitats like mountain grasslands #AdvantageNotADeer #2021MMM Photo is taken from the top of an incline. Sloping away from
@unseco Musk Deer is enjoying his home territory in a particularly rich lichen foraging patch. #Yum #2021MMM
@unseco Out of the mists emerges... the Aoudad! #2021MMM
@unseco Musk Deer stops and sizes up the newcomer #2021MMM
@unseco Wanting to approach the lichen patch from ~15 feet away, the Aoudad signals HIS alpha status to intimidate this smaller Musk "deer." Aoudad 'raises the fringe hair over his withers and then licks his own muzzle!' #TakeThat! (Gray & Simpson 1980) #2021MMM
@unseco Not wanting to move away from his lichen patch, Musk Deer stands straight with 'ears erect, displaying canines to rivals with lips vibrating, and the rear part of its body waggling' (Meng et al 2012) #DontYouDare #2021MMM
@unseco Aoudad likewise escalates his intimidation tactics: Aoudad 'utters a low guttural growl' (Gray & Simpson 1980) #2021MMM
@unseco Musk Deer COUNTERS by aggressively circling the larger "sheep" and then retreating while barking (Meng et al 2012, Cap et al. 2008) #DidYouGetMyMessage #2021MMM
@unseco Aoudad steps up toward the Musk Deer #2021MMM
@unseco Aoudad lowers his horns about to charge at the Musk Deer, gathering himself to reach a 'closing velocity up to 80.7 km/hr (50 mph)' (Gray & Simpson 1980) #2021MMM
@unseco Circling with the quickness like they do, Musk Deer 'slashes his tusks on the <Aoudad's> hindlegs, hindquarters, and flanks, tearing the skin and flesh' (Sathyakumar et al. 1992) #2021MMM
@unseco AOUDAD STUMBLES!!! #2021MMM
@unseco Head down, Aoudad switches tactics to the side-by-side 'close butting, head shoving, and hooking the horns' that Aoudads do (Gray & Simpson 1980) #2021MMM
@unseco But the Musk Deer springs and 'drives his front hooves into <Aoudad's> head, pushing down'! (Sathyakumar et al. 1992) #2021MMM
@unseco Aoudad swiftly concludes that no lichen is worth this lickin' he's gettin'! #2021MMM
@unseco Aoudad turns to trot retreat when the Musk Deer 'furiously chases Aoudad using his tusks to slash down fiercely' (Sathyakumar et al. 1992) until the Aoudad runs at top speed to escape this vicious berserker! #2021MMM

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More from @PKurnath

9 Mar
TONIGHT'S BATTLE: Hopi Chipmunk vs. Southern Red-backed Vole #2021MMM
This year, the wild card bout pits two pint-sized but fierce rodents against each other #TeamRodent #2021MMM
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12 Mar 20
LAST BATTLE: 8th-seeded Red Panda (Ailurus fulgens) versus 9th-seeded Spotted Linsang (Prionodon pardicolor) #2020MMM
Our last #TeamDogsish competitor is the Red Panda, a small-to-medium sized carnivore (5kg/11lbs/23stoats) recognizable for its white face, red-ish back & long tail with red-and-buff colored rings #StoatsAsMeasurement #FLOOF #2020MMM
Red Pandas have round heads, large pointed ears, & their bodies are covered with woolly hair (even the soles of their feet!) as an adaptation to their cold, native climates at high elevations #MoreFLOOF #2020MMM…
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10 Mar 20
TONIGHT THE WILDCARD: Grandidier's "Mongoose" (Galidictis grandidieri) versus the Pygmy Spotted Skunk (Spilogale pygmaea)! #2020MMM
Galidictis grandidieri was recently better-recognized as a vontsira than a mongoose, but since we <3 our players, we wanted to make it easier to find research on them, hence the air quotes. #2020MMM [gif is man doing air quotes]
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29 Mar 19
UP NEXT for the ELITE TRAIT: #2 MANATEE (Trichechus manatus) versus #1 MOOSE (Alces alces) #2019MMM
(tonight's battle was a group effort between @chumblebiome, @je_light & yours truly) #2019MMM
The last two mammals standing from the WATERFALLS division have definitely benefited from their higher seeds & home court advantage #2019MMM
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27 Mar 19
UP NEXT from the JUMP JUMP division: 1-seed TIGER versus 4-seed BHARAL #2019MMM
Our Bengal Tiger weighs in at 258kg/1173 stoats & the Himalayan Blue Sheep or Bharal weights 75kg/341 stoats #StoatsAsMeasurement #2019MMM
As noted by #TeamStoat, the male Bharal scared away its previous competitors (the stoat & rocky wallaby) in its native montane habitats of Nepal & India #2019MMM
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22 Mar 19
UP NEXT: 4-seed BHARAL versus 12-seed ROCK-WALLABY #2019MMM
During round 1, the rock-wallaby upset the serval with one wicked kick #CrouchingMacropodHiddenWallaby #YouGotSERValED #2019MMM
And to recap, this 10lb/4.5kg/21stoat sized marsupial edemic to northeastern Queensland in good ol' Oz… photo by @MichalKrause #StoatsAsMeasurement #2019MMM
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