New Species

A second species of the snake genus Blythia

A second species of the snake genus Blythia

New Species, Reptiles August 28, 2017 at 2:22 pm

A second species of the genus Blythia is described, from Mizoram, India.

‘Yoda bat’ officially recognised as new species

‘Yoda bat’ officially recognised as new species

Mammals, New Species August 27, 2017 at 10:32 am

An unusual breed of fruit bat—previously nicknamed ‘Yoda’ due to its resemblance to the Star Wars Jedi Master—has now officially been registered as a new species and renamed the happy (Hamamas) tube-nosed fruit bat.  The widespread New Guinean species which is tentatively placed in the cyclotis group.  

A bioluminescent lanternshark

A bioluminescent lanternshark

Fish, New Species August 24, 2017 at 5:38 pm

The small, bioluminescent, long nosed shark was found nearly 1,000 feet below the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Hawaii’s northwestern islands.  First discovered 17 years ago, initial findings were published in February before the news was widely circulated by the corresponding researchers’ institutions this month.   See also other lanternsharks recently discovered.

A frog with a funny face

A frog with a funny face

Amphibians, New Species August 23, 2017 at 11:22 pm

Nasikabatrachus bhupathi is soiled-dwelling species of purple frog. It inhabits the eastern slopes of the Western Ghats.  The discovery is significant as it constitutes additional evidence in favour of the theory of continental drift.  The Purple frog is an inhabitant of Seychelles, and the discovery of Bhupathy’s purple frog in India suggests that the Indian subcontinent was part of the ancient landmass of Gondwana before splitting from Seychelles 65 million years ago.

A new species of vermilion flycatcher from the Galapagos Island, likely extinct

A new species of vermilion flycatcher from the Galapagos Island, likely extinct

New Species August 15, 2017 at 2:58 pm

A new species of vermilion flycatcher from the Galapagos Islands has been described from museum specimens , but the birds have not been seen in the wild since 1987.

Andean Toad thought to be extinct, rediscovered in the Andes of Ecuador

Andean Toad thought to be extinct, rediscovered in the Andes of Ecuador

Amphibians, Lazarus Species August 15, 2017 at 2:08 pm

Ecuadorian and British scientists have rediscovered one of the rarest amphibians of Ecuador, thought to have gone extinct more than three decades ago.  The Carchi Andean Toad (Rhaebo colomai) inhabits a small region in the border area between Ecuador and Colombia. The last time a specimen was observed in Ecuador was in 1984.  An expedition in July 2017 found a small population in the Dracula Reserve, in the northwestern Andes of Ecuador. The expedition was carried out by scientists from the Laboratory of Terrestrial Zoology of University San Francisco de Quito USFQ, the Natural History Museum of London, and the InstitutoRead More

New subspecies of sea snake is a floating ambush predator

New subspecies of sea snake is a floating ambush predator

New Species, Reptiles August 1, 2017 at 9:22 am

A new subspecies of sea snake has been discovered off the coast of Costa Rica, and it’s got a unique hunting style that’s never been seen before in aquatic reptiles. Hanging from the surface like a coiled spring, it preys upon unsuspecting fish as they swim below. The sea snake “opportunistically” feeds on small fish by hanging upside down in a coiled, or sinusoidal, position just below the water surface, and it only does so only at night. It’s just one of several differences that distinguish it from its closest living relative,  the  yellow-bellied sea snake, which lives in tropical waters throughoutRead More

New Species News now available on Facebook!

New Species News now available on Facebook!

New Species July 27, 2017 at 8:59 am

b Occasional, selected news from Awe of Nature is now available at Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/speciesnews/ Please follow and comment or post about new species discoveries!

A new mola, genetically ID’d as a new species

A new mola, genetically ID’d as a new species

Fish, New Species July 26, 2017 at 11:23 am

It turns out there was a third species hiding in plain sight all along, Mola tecta.  Marianne Marianne Nyegaard from the Sunfish Research Group has proposed the first addition to the genus Mola in 125 years.   The new species was described based on specimens from  New Zealand and Australia,  South Africa, and southern Chile.

The Species We Have Yet to Meet

The Species We Have Yet to Meet

New Species July 20, 2017 at 7:08 pm

William Laurance,  James Cook University.  “What we don’t know may be just as important to setting effective conservation priorities as what we’ve already discovered.” Laurence states that recent studies “suggest three important points: that there’s an enormous wealth of biodiversity on Earth that we have so far failed to discover; that much of this biodiversity is imperiled; and that many unknown species differ from the life forms that have been scientifically described to date.”  

New snail genus from northeastern Thailand

New snail genus from northeastern Thailand

Invertebrates, New Species July 18, 2017 at 3:19 pm

Aenigmatoconcha clivicola, in natural habitat. Kitti Tanmuangpak in Tumpeesuwan & Tumpeesuwan (2017).  

Mistaken identity of East Asian vine species resolved after 100 years

Mistaken identity of East Asian vine species resolved after 100 years

Lazarus Species, New Species, Plants July 18, 2017 at 1:57 pm

New light has been shed on a misclassified vine species in the Ryukyu Islands of East Asia. This plant was first discovered in 1917 in Taiwan, when it was provisionally identified as Kadsura japonica. The plant was recently spotted again after 100 years, and further investigation proved that it was in fact a different species: Kadsura matsudae.

Newly Described Algae Species Toughens Up Corals to Endure Warming Oceans

Newly Described Algae Species Toughens Up Corals to Endure Warming Oceans

New Species July 18, 2017 at 1:39 pm

Researchers at Penn State University have identified a new species of stress-tolerant Symbiodinium, a genus of algae that occurs mutualistically with corals in a partnership that promotes the health and growth of coral reef ecosystems. The team’s paper also describes the geographical distribution of S glynnii, how it differs from other stress-tolerant symbiont species, and its capacity to spread to places around the Pacific and live with different coral hosts.

A fish for Enya

A fish for Enya

Fish, New Species July 18, 2017 at 10:18 am

A new species of fish from the Orinoco River drainage has been named for Irish singer songwriter Enya, for her famous song “Orinoco Flow”.   Another new species of Leporinus  is also described.

A newly discovered hermit crab builds its own house with the help of sea anenomes

A newly discovered hermit crab builds its own house with the help of sea anenomes

Crustaceans, New Species July 18, 2017 at 10:03 am

Much like other hermit crabs in its family (Parapaguridae), the little crustacean does not use the shells of other molluscs to shelter its vulnerable body, but rather finds a home in the soft, polypy masses built from sand and material created by sea anemones which go on to live on the backs of these crabs in an amazing symbiosis.  The new hermit crab was discovered in 2013 during a survey of the west coast of South Africa, and found restricted to a surprisingly small area for no obvious reason.

A new wolf spider named for Hagrid’s Aragog, from Harry Potter

A new wolf spider named for Hagrid’s Aragog, from Harry Potter

Arachnids, Celebrity Taxa, New Species July 18, 2017 at 9:48 am

A new species of wolf spider found in southeastern Iran has been officially named after Aragog, the enormous, sentient arachnid character in the Harry Potter books and movies.

12 favorite sea slugs of the man who’s discovered more than 1000 of them

12 favorite sea slugs of the man who’s discovered more than 1000 of them

Invertebrates, New Species, Species Discovery July 12, 2017 at 10:04 am

“You can’t just accept discovering science as ‘enough,’ says California Academy of Sciences Curator of Invertebrate Zoology and Geology Terry Gosliner. “We have an obligation to explain its relevance. We need to find more ways to transfer scientific findings to the public so that we can positively impact public policy and conservation management – especially now, when the natural world is changing so rapidly.”

New Hummingbird Species Discovered

New Hummingbird Species Discovered

Birds, New Species July 4, 2017 at 10:43 am

A new hummingbird species, called the dry-forest sabrewing, has been discovered in the tropical forests of eastern Brazil.  The sabrewings are very large for hummingbirds, typically 5-6 inches (12-15 cm) long.

First record of an invasive species preying on an undiscovered native species

First record of an invasive species preying on an undiscovered native species

Fish, New Species June 28, 2017 at 3:41 pm

Researchers have identified a new deep water goby in the Caribbean.  At the time of its discovery, from a submarine, researchers recorded footage of a lionfish cornering, attacking and eating the new species. The new species described in the paper has a bright orange stripe down its spine and schools together in masses of about 100 fish—starkly different behavior from most gobies that hide as individuals in holes or cracks in the reef, making the new species an easy target for lionfish attacks.  The good news is the goby species being eaten by the lionfish appears to be abundant throughoutRead More

Scientist on honeymoon discovers first amphibious centipede

Scientist on honeymoon discovers first amphibious centipede

Myriapods, New Species, Species Discovery June 28, 2017 at 10:52 am

Entomologist George Beccaloni of the Natural History Museum in London first discovered the large, venemous centipede when he was on his honeymoon in Thailand. He was looking under rocks near a waterfall and was able to capture a specimen of this large creature.  When in the water, S. cataracta swam like an eel, with its many legs moving in a wave-like motion in order to propel the creature forward, which surely helps during hunting.