Sixty new species of dragonflies and damselflies, from Africa

Main report: 60 New Species of Dragonflies Found
(Newsweek)
Other Reporting: EurekAlert, Science Magazine
Scientific Paper: Odonatologica    
New Taxa: Umma gumma, Notogomphus gorilla, Porpax mezierei
Common Name: Robust sparklewing, Flame-tipped jewel, Blue-spotted Pricklyleg
Species named for: Pink Floyd album Ummagumma
Categories: Celebrity Taxa | Insects | New Species
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The researchers found a stunning amount of diversity amongst the dragonflies, many of which are brightly colored.  With this research, the number of dragonfly species known in Africa increases at once by almost 10%, from 700 to 760 species.  Naming so many new species became a challenge for the authors. The species live in freshwater bogs, lakes, rivers and well-forested areas that are increasingly under threat.   “The species’ beauty and sensitivity can raise awareness for the densest and most threatened biodiversity: freshwater covers less than one percent of Earth’s surface, but harbours ten percent of animal species, of which a third may be at risk of extinction”.

Umma gumma, male; Moyabi, Gabon. Jens Kipping/Naturalis Biodiversity Center

 

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