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Ugly Animals Ignored In Scientific Studies, Research Shows

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne. Nothing quite captures human attention like cute animals, and that can be a problem. A study out of Australia found that half the country's wildlife are considered ugly - hairy rodents, say, and big-eared bats - and that most of the in-depth scientific studies are devoted to charmers like koalas and kangaroos. Researchers say this bias leads to ignorance, especially about small and nocturnal animals and their ecosystems making them more vulnerable. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.