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The תִּנְשָֽׁמֶת is mentioned twice regarding non-kosher animals.

In Leviticus 11:18, among the non-kosher birds:

וְאֶת־הַתִּנְשֶׁ֥מֶת וְאֶת־הַקָּאָ֖ת וְאֶת־הָרָחָֽם׃

In Leviticus 11:30. among the non-kosher "swarming" ground animals:

וְהָאֲנָקָ֥ה וְהַכֹּ֖חַ וְהַלְּטָאָ֑ה וְהַחֹ֖מֶט וְהַתִּנְשָֽׁמֶת׃

So, which / what is it? Is it a bird or insect, mammal or what?

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From The Living Torah by Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan זצ"ל:

In Leviticus 11:18, among the non-kosher birds:

וְאֶת־הַתִּנְשֶׁ֥מֶת וְאֶת־הַקָּאָ֖ת וְאֶת־הָרָחָֽם׃‏

The swan, the pelican and the magpie.

In his footnotes: 11:18 swan. Tinshemeth in Hebrew; kuknos in Greek; cycnus in Latin. Other sources identify it as a bat, chauve-souris in French (Rashi; Chizzkuni). Still others say it is a kind of owl, chouette in French (Rashi, Chullin 63a); suetta in Old Spanish (Radak, Sherashim; Ralbag). This is thought to be the barn screech owl (Tyto alba).

In Leviticus 11:30. among the non-kosher "swarming" ground animals:

וְהָאֲנָקָ֥ה וְהַכֹּ֖חַ וְהַלְּטָאָ֑ה וְהַחֹ֖מֶט וְהַתִּנְשָֽׁמֶת׃‏

The hedgehog, the chameleon, the lizard, the snail and the mole.

In his footnotes: mole. Tinshemeth in Hebrew; talpa in Latin and Old french (Rashi; Chizzkuni; Ralbag; Radak, Sherashim.) The Targum, too, translates it as ashuth which is a mole (cf. Moed Katan 6a). Other sources translate it as salamander (Targum Yonathan). In Arabic it is rendered as sambratz (Saadia), sam abratz (Ibn Janach), or darbutz (Ralbag), a large-headed lizard that burrows underground, probably a type of gecko.

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    As happens often in Hebrew, It looks like the same word is being used for multiple meanings, right?
    – DanF
    Apr 14 '15 at 13:39
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Isaac Levy who translated his grandfather's chumash (Rav Shimshon Rafael Hirsch) from German to English deliberately leaves tinshemes (as did his grandfather) in 11:18 untranslated because all birds not named are kosher and the consequences of an error would be too great. He comments that his grandfather had deliberately not translated the name of the bird into German and he is not translating it to English for the same reason. He translates 11:30 as a mole.

Note that I do not have (as yet) a translation for the old French words used by Rashi. While we can assume that the Stone commentary has translated them, I cannot verify that. As a result I will just mention the description.

Rashi says it is a nocturnal flying animal that is like a rat. The Stone (Art Scroll) commentary says that this means it is a bat. It then says that Chizkuni also says it is a bat while Ralbag says it is an owl.

Rashi in 11:18 says that the sheretz tinshemes (11:30) is a blind animal similar to the bird tinshemes. This would be why the Stone commentary says that Rashi identifies it as a mole. It then says that Rav Saadiah Gaon identifies it as a type of lizard.

The Stone commentary points to Chullin 63a as stating that the bird tinshemes (11:18) and the sheretz tinshemes (11:30) are different creatures.

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