Giant Aye Aye

Mystery PrM ate of Madagascar.

Distribution: Northwestern Madagascar.

Significant sighting: An exceptionally large aye-aye skin was found around 1930 by a government official named Hourcq at a native's home near Andranomavo, Soalala District, Madagascar.

Possible explanation: A surviving fossil lemur, Daubentonia robusta, that was probably contemporaneous with humans. It was three to five times heavier than the living Aye-aye (D. mada-gascariensis). No skull has yet been found, but postcranial bones are larger and much more robust than those of the living form. Teeth perforated for stringing offer direct evidence that the animal was hunted by humans, and it is virtually certain that this species was driven to extinction by human action in the past 2,000 years.

Source: W. C. Osman Hill, Primates: Comparative Anatomy and Taxonomy (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1953), vol. 1, Strepsirhini.

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