Recent Posts

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.

New Species of Fijian Iguana

New Species of Fijian Iguana

New Species, Reptiles, Species Discovery June 7, 2017 at 3:35 pm

The new species of lizard, Brachylophus gau, is one of only four living species of South Pacific iguana, and is restricted to the island of Gau, Republic of Fiji.   The first known recording of iguanas on Gau Island dates back to an expedition in the mid-19th century. In 1854, the survey ship HMS Herald carried Scottish naturalist John MacGillivray to the Fiji islands, where he chronicled his encounters with native wildlife in his journal.  MacGillivray’s journal entries were used with live observations and museum specimens to confirm and describe the new species. The discovery of the new species of lizard —Read More

A new fork-tongued frog from Vietnam

A new fork-tongued frog from Vietnam

Amphibians, New Species June 3, 2017 at 10:16 am

A new species of Limnonectes is described from northeastern Vietnam based on morphological and molecular differences.

Three species of mini thorn snails identified with CT scans

Three species of mini thorn snails identified with CT scans

Invertebrates, New Species June 3, 2017 at 10:07 am

Using computer tomography (CT) tiny, highly fragile snails measuring less than 2 mm are described.  In total, there are fourteen species of thorn snails known in North and Central America.  

1,730 New Plant Species Were Described in 2016

1,730 New Plant Species Were Described in 2016

New Species, Plants June 1, 2017 at 8:55 am

In a recent addition of Kew Garden’s State of the World’s Plants, they report on 1,730 newly described plant species from all over the world.  This is the second State of the World’s Plants report in which teh authors have scrutinised databases, published literature, policy documents, reports and satellite imagery to provide a synthesis of current knowledge on the world’s plants.

A new North American flying squirrel

A new North American flying squirrel

Mammals, New Species May 30, 2017 at 11:40 am

Humboldt’s flying squirrel is the third species of flying squirrel found in North America.  The discovery means that three—not two—species of the furred gliders live in North America, and it changes our understanding of how these squirrels evolved and spread across the american continent.  The newly described Humboldt’s flying  squirrel (Glaucomys oregonensis) is found in forested habitats along the Pacific coast of North America, from southern British Columbia to southern California.

A cryptic species of monkey frog from Amazonian rainforests of northern Peru

A cryptic species of monkey frog from Amazonian rainforests of northern Peru

Amphibians, New Species May 22, 2017 at 2:39 pm

Distinct eye color and genetic data reveal a new species of monkey frog .

ESF 2017 Top 10 New Species (with video)

ESF 2017 Top 10 New Species (with video)

New Species May 19, 2017 at 11:51 am

The ESF International Institute for Species Exploration has released its annual pick of the year’s top ten species.  Dr. Quintin Wheeler, IISE Founding Director and President, SUNY-ESF (College of Environmental Science and Forestry), reviews ESF’s new Top Ten list.  See video Released every year around the birthday of Carolus Linneaus, the 2017 list is the 10th annual ESF Top Ten New Species list.  It is not easy effort, with an approximate average of 18,000 new species described every year.  An international selection committee selected these most fascinating and intriguing newly discovered creatures: “Sorting Hat” Spider (Eriovixia gryffindori) Unexpected Katydid (Eulophophyllum kirki) OmnivorousRead More

A marvelous new glassfrog from Amazonian Ecuador

A marvelous new glassfrog from Amazonian Ecuador

Amphibians, New Species May 19, 2017 at 10:20 am

A recently discovered new species of glass frog from Amazonian Ecuador fully exposes its heart thanks to the transparent skin stretching all over its chest as well as tummy.