Condylura - Greek; knuckle (refers to the knotty appearance of the tail in dried specimens)
cristata - Latin; crested (refers to crest or star of nasal tentacles)

Order: Insectivora
Family: Talpidae

Star-nosed moles can not be mistaken for any other animal. Not only do they possess the large fossorial forelegs which are typical of all moles, but their nostrils are surrounded by a naked disk with 22 pink fleshy tentacles which they use to hunt invertebrates along the water-bottom. Moles are 152-211 mm long and weigh 30-75 g. Condylura's powerful limbs and fusiform body are as useful for swimming as for digging, and their velvety black coat keeps them warm when they are submerged.