New Species

Another new Australia bush tomato, in a brand new national park

Another new Australia bush tomato, in a brand new national park

New Species, Plants June 28, 2017 at 10:27 am

US botanists have named a new bush tomato species, based on collections made by their Australian colleagues, during government-funded surveys in a brand new national park, Limmen National Park, Northern Territory, Australia.  After looking at collections from biodiversity surveys in a vast are area that is now Limmen National Park, Bucknell University biology professor, Chris Martine, decided to form an expedition to relocate and describe a mysterious bush tomato uncovered during government-sponsored studies.  Notably, Dr. Martine recently discovered and described another bush tomato, from Martine collected the species during a field expedition to Mirima National Park in western Australia, which was namedRead More

A new amazon parrot from the Yucatan

A new amazon parrot from the Yucatan

Birds, New Species June 27, 2017 at 3:54 pm

The birds’ distinctive calls, behavior, plumage, and DNA led the researchers to declare the animal a new species.  Further genetic analyses are necessary to help prove the new species more definitively.  Researchers estimate there are only a hundred blue-winged Amazons in the wild.

Six or more new reef fish discovered in a continuing survey of the Fiji Lau Seascape

Six or more new reef fish discovered in a continuing survey of the Fiji Lau Seascape

Fish, New Species June 26, 2017 at 5:12 pm

In the latest reef survey of the marine RAP (Rapid Assessment Program) in the Lau Seascape in the Fijian Archipelago, researchers attempted to photograph as many reef fish species as possible, particularly those that are rare or appear new.  527 species over the 11-day expedition, with six to nine new or potentially new species, as well as several previously known but still undescribed species.  Most of the potentially new fish species were small gobies, including a number of coral dwarf gobies in the genera Trimma and Eviota, as well as a sand goby in the genus Grallenia.  There was also a beautiful damselfish, believed toRead More

A new rabbit from South America, with more to come

A new rabbit from South America, with more to come

Mammals, New Species June 24, 2017 at 8:21 am

A Portland State University researcher discovered that a rabbit known for centuries to exist in South America is different enough from its cousins to be its own unique species.  The creature will be only the third rabbit species named in South America.  Prof. Luis Ruedas made the discovery after studying rabbit specimens at the Naturalis Biodiversity Center in Leiden, the Netherlands, which were collected in the 1980s by Dutch scientists during the fieldwork in Suriname. The discovery follows another finding that Ruedas published this year showing that the South American cottontail, which was considered to be a single species distributed overRead More

Six new deep reef-dwelling species from Easter Island photographed

Six new deep reef-dwelling species from Easter Island photographed

Fish, New Species June 23, 2017 at 12:00 pm

In a paper released last month, a team of Chilean researchers revealed the first images of what may be at least six new reef-dwelling species.  The finds include a butterflyfish with vertical black bars and a wrasse sporting eye-catching orange stripes.  In April technical divers with the California Academy of Sciences were able to capture a specimen of one of the new species — a damselfish with yellow fins — which will soon receive a scientific name (see reports of the expedition, with descriptions of other new species).  These are the first video observations from this region of the deep-dwelling fishesRead More

A pretty little crab, found in the Arabian Gulf

A pretty little crab, found in the Arabian Gulf

Crustaceans, New Species June 22, 2017 at 11:44 am

A research team from the Marine Biology Cluster at Qatar University Environmental Science Center discovered a new species of crab during an exploration trip on the research vessel Janan. The trip aimed to investigate marine benthic biodiversity within the Qatar Marine Zone.  Coleusia janani is a small crab of 13.6mm which inhabits a gravel/mud substrate associated with the oyster bed ecosystem.

Five new species of flowering trees from Sulawesi

Five new species of flowering trees from Sulawesi

New Species, Plants June 22, 2017 at 11:29 am

Syzygium is a genus of flowering trees and shrubs in the myrtle family that contains more than 1,500 species. Only 14 of those were previously known to occur on Sulawesi, the world’s eleventh-largest island, however. By comparison, Borneo, Sulawesi’s larger neighbor to the west (and the third largest island in the world), is home to around 200 Syzygium species.  Three of the five newly described species on Sulawesi qualify for an endangered listing on the IUCN Red List.

Three new species of chameleons, from Central Africa

Three new species of chameleons, from Central Africa

New Species, Reptiles, Species Discovery June 22, 2017 at 11:16 am

A team of herpetologists, led by Dr. Eli Greenbaum, associate professor of biological sciences at the University of Texas at El Paso, has discovered three new species of chameleons. The reptile trio, historically thought to be a single species, was found in different parts of the Albertine Rift in Central Africa.  The specimens were collected in the Democratic Republic of the Congo between 2009 and 2014.  There are 206 described species of chameleons. “As chronicled the forthcoming book by the paper’s author, in Eli Greenbaum, Ph.D, “Emerald Labyrinth: A Scientist’s Adventures in the Jungles of the Congo,” the coming years will almost certainlyRead More

Four new species of burrowing frog, from Western Ghats India

Four new species of burrowing frog, from Western Ghats India

Amphibians, New Species June 22, 2017 at 10:56 am

Of the 40-odd species of frogs that belong to genus Fejerverya, only one was previously known to have a burrowing lifestyle – the Rufescent Burrowing Frog.  After sampling populations of frogs in parts of the Western Ghats that looked similar to the Rufescent Burrowing Frog, scientists identified four different species entirely – based on differences in DNA, physical appearance and variations in their calls. These new species are the Neilcox Burrowing Frog (Fejervarya neilcoxi), the Manoharan Burrowing Frog (Fejervarya manoharani), the CEPF Burrowing Frog (Fejervarya cepfi) and the Kadar Burrowing Frog (Fejervarya kadar).  

Boa not seen for 64 years, rediscovered alive after ‘wanted posters’ posted

Boa not seen for 64 years, rediscovered alive after ‘wanted posters’ posted

Lazarus Species, Reptiles June 20, 2017 at 11:18 am

1953 was the last time any researcher saw a Cropan’s boa (Corallus cropanii) alive, which lives in Brazil’s Atlantic Forest south of São Paulo. Since then, the snake—thought to be the rarest boid in the world—has been recorded by scientists just five times. In January, a 1.7-meter-long female was captured by a group of rural workers in January.  The recently-captured boa is lucky: One of its captors was about to hack it to death, when the other two recalled “wanted signs” that had been posted by researchers from the University of São Paulo’s Museum of Zoology and the Butantan Institute,Read More

Chameleon discovered again, after 180 years

Chameleon discovered again, after 180 years

Lazarus Species, New Species, Reptiles June 20, 2017 at 9:31 am

Distinctive white dots on its shoulders helped researchers realize the new species had been collected before, in the 1830s by a naturalist in the Dutch East Indies government, but never named nor described.    

A wolf snake from Indonesia

A wolf snake from Indonesia

New Species, Reptiles June 20, 2017 at 9:17 am

This new white-ringed snake has sharp, powerful fangs like the venomous snakes, and characteristic of wolf snakes.  

A New Hawkweed from Romania

A New Hawkweed from Romania

New Species, Plants June 20, 2017 at 8:40 am

Based on morphological differences from two other belonging to Hieracium sect. Cernua from the Southern Carpathians and considering its apomictic mode of reproduction, a new species of Hieracium is described.

A new species of guitarfish

A new species of guitarfish

Fish, New Species June 16, 2017 at 5:30 pm

Rhinobatos austini sp. n. is described from the southwestern Indian Ocean based on four specimens collected from the KwaZulu-Natal Province, South Africa and from Mozambique.  R. austini appears to be a shallow, more coastal species (<1–107 m) compared to R. holcorhynchus that has a mostly offshore (75–254 m) depth distribution.

A new genus of catfish, with four new species

A new genus of catfish, with four new species

Fish, New Species June 16, 2017 at 5:12 pm

Rhyacoglanis, a new genus of the South American freshwater catfish family Pseudopimelodidae is described from cis-Andean portions of the continent.    

A new genus of slopefish, discovered in a fish market, and photographed during a coelocanth survey.

A new genus of slopefish, discovered in a fish market, and photographed during a coelocanth survey.

Fish, New Species June 16, 2017 at 4:20 pm

An entirely new genus is described from the mesophotic reefs of Indonesia, just the second genus to join the slopefish family.  Cymatognathus aureolateralis, the Wavy Jaw Slopefish, was discovered by chance at a local fish market in Northern Sulawesi, where it had been collected as bycatch. Our only glimpse at this fish in life comes courtesy of a single, tantalizing image captured at a depth of 200 meters as part of a coelacanth survey.  

A new lizard endemic to Morocco

A new lizard endemic to Morocco

New Species, Reptiles June 13, 2017 at 11:34 am

A new endemic lizard to Morocco, Acanthodactylus margaritae sp. nov., was described.  The new species is confined to arid and semi-arid bioclimatic areas between the High Atlas and Anti-Atlas Mountains. The southern lineage, A. busacki, is now restricted to the Atlantic Sahara.

A new armoured catfish species from north-eastern Brazil

A new armoured catfish species from north-eastern Brazil

Fish, New Species June 8, 2017 at 12:40 pm

A re-evaluation of the armoured catfish species of Hypostomus in the Rio Jaguaribe, north-eastern Brazil, was prompted by the discovery of specimens with pale spots on a dark background collected from that basin c. 1936 and deposited at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia. Recent field collections in the Rio Jarguaribe basin confirmed the presence of the pale-spotted specimens and its distinctiveness as a new species.

New frog, and 1000th new species in EJT

New frog, and 1000th new species in EJT

Amphibians, New Species June 7, 2017 at 11:33 pm

In its 325th issue the European Journal of Taxonomy, published by the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, has published its 1000th paper on a new species.  This latest publication describes Pristimantis boucephalus, or the Bigheaded Rubber Frog, a minute species with a large head from the Yanachaga-Chemillén National Park in Peru.

A New Species of Freshwater Eel-tailed Catfish from Australia

A New Species of Freshwater Eel-tailed Catfish from Australia

Fish, New Species June 7, 2017 at 10:19 pm

Tandanus bellingerensis, new species, is described based on specimens from four river drainages (Bellinger, Macleay, Hastings, and Manning rivers) of the mid-northern coast of New South Wales, Australia.