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Slideshow: The World’s 12 Cutest Pygmy Animals

Sometimes the best things come in small (and adorable!) packages. Warning: Photos may cause involuntary awww's.

  • pygmy_hippo

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    Pygmy Hippopotamus. Average size: 350-550 pounds, 2 1/2 feet tall. You won't easily find these hungry hippos in the wild. Zoos help raise and protect families like Kambiri and her mama.

  • pygmy_hedgehog

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    African Pygmy Hedgehog. Average size: 1 – 1.5 lbs, 6-8 inches long. These little critters have become an increasingly popular domestic pet.

  • pygmy_marmosets2

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    Pygmy Marmoset. Average size: 4 ounces, 5 inches tall. The world's smallest monkey can leap an astounding distance of 15 feet!

  • pygmy_seahorse

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    Pygmy Seahorse. Average size: max 1 inch long. These pretty sea ponies come in many colors, sizes and shapes to blend into their coastal environments.

  • pygmy_owl

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    Northern Pygmy Owl. 2.6 ounces, 7 inches tall, 15 inch wingspan. Perhaps suffering from little man's syndrome, these wiseguys are actually ruthless hunters.

  • pygmy_elephant

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    Pygmy Elephant. Average size: 6 1/2 feet tall at shoulder. Newborns are about the size of a your family dog.

  • pygmy_horse

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    Pygmy Horse. Average size: 34–38 inches tall from the withers. Organizations worldwide host miniature horse shows. I wonder if they have a 'world's cutest' ribbon!

  • pygmy_goat

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    Pygmy Goat. Average size: 70 lbs, 20 inches tall. These tiny goats are commonly bred on farms, but are not used for dairy or meat (phew!).

  • pygmy_shrew

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    American Pygmy Shrew. Average size: roughly the weight of a dime, 3.5 inches long. These critters don't even know how cute they are, because they are totally and completely blind!

  • pygmy_rabbit

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    Pygmy Rabbit. Average size: 1 lb, max 11 inches long. The smallest rabbits in the U.S. are actually the only ones who dig their own burrows.

  • pygmy_leatherjacket

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    Pygmy Leatherjacket. Average size: 3.5 inches. They are a very diverse (and cute!) bunch, with an estimated 90 species.

  • pygmy_mouse_lemur

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    Last (and in some ways least), the Pygmy Mouse Lemur. Average size: 1-4 ounces, 2.25-4.75 inches long, 4.75 inch tail. The smallest primate on the planet only comes out at night, making them a tricky subject for biologists.

Kambiri, a female pygmy hippo, was just born last month at Australia’s Toranga Zoo. This pretty babe only weighed 11.7 lbs at birth. That’s not much more than a human baby!

Pygmy animals are very similar to their larger, more familiar counterparts, but they are usually significantly dwarfed. After the birth of Kambiri, we just couldn’t get enough of these tiny members of the animal kingdom.

A Moment of Science has been on the search for photos of the world’s most potently cute critters. Now it’s time to show and tell!

Learn more about Kambiri and other pygmy animals:

  • Pygmy Hippo Birth Highlights Importance of Zoo Breeding (LiveScience)
  • Top 10 Pygmy Animals (FactZoo)

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Molly Plunkett

is a journalism student at Indiana University and an online producer for A Moment of Science. She is originally from Wheaton, IL.

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