2012's 'best' new species revealed

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Offline scooped away

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« on: May 24, 2013, 02:05:29 AM »
A glow-in-the-dark cockroach, a harp-shaped carnivorous sponge and the smallest frog on Earth are among the most bizarre newly discovered species of 2012, chosen by scientists.
Also slithering into this year's top ten is a snail-eating false coral snake, as well as flowering bushes from a disappearing forest in Madagascar.
A green lacewing that was discovered through social media and hanging flies that perfectly mimicked ginkgo tree leaves 165 million years ago were also included by the International Institute for Species Exploration at Arizona State University.The International Institute for Species Exploration at Arizona State University has compiled a list of the ten best newly discovered species of 2012. The International Institute for Species Exploration at Arizona State University has compiled a list of the ten best newly discovered species of 2012. They include a glow-in-the-dark cockroach, a green lacewing that was first discovered through Flickr, and a frog that is only 7mm big. A total of 140 species were nominatedRounding up the list is a new monkey with a  blue backside and human-like eyes, a tiny violet and a black staining fungus  that threatens rare Paleolithic cave paintings in France.
The weird and wonderful creatures were all  identified for the first time in 2012.
They make it into a list published each year  by a global committee of taxonomists, scientists responsible for species  exploration and classification.
Professor Quentin Wheeler, founding director  of the group, said: 'We have identified only about two million of an estimated  10 to 12 million living species and that does not count most of the microbial  world.
 
'For decades, we have averaged 18,000 species discoveries per year which seemed reasonable before the biodiversity crisis.
Now, knowing that millions of species may not survive the 21st century, it is time to pick up the pace.
Members made their selection from more than 140 nominated species.

To be considered, species must have been described in compliance with the  appropriate code of nomenclature, whether botanical, zoological or  microbiological, and have been officially named during 2012.
Nominations for the 2014 list - for species described in 2013 - can now be made online.
Previous top ten lists from the past six years are available from the Arizona State University website.

This glow-in-the dark cockroach was discovered last year in Ecuador. This glow-in-the dark cockroach was discovered last year in Ecuador. Its official name is Lucihormetica luckae and it uses luminescence to create its glow. More than a dozen luminescent cockroaches have been discovered since 1999 and this latest addition is thought to now be endangered, or even extinct. Only one specimen has been found A new species of snail-eating snake was discovered in Serranía de Tabasará mountain range in Panama. A new species of snail-eating snake was discovered in Serranía de Tabasará mountain range in Panama. The snake is nocturnal and hunts soft-bodied prey including earthworms and amphibian eggs, as well as snails and slugs. The snake is not a threat to humans and can ward off prey by mimicking the dark and light rings found on venomous coral snakes. Its name comes from the Spanish phrase 'No a la mina' or 'No to the mine.' Biologist Dr Antonio Valdecasas, of the Museum of Natural Sciences,  Madrid, said: 'Selecting the final list of new species from a wide  representation of life forms such as bacteria, fungi, plants and  animals, is difficult.
'It requires finding an equilibrium between certain criteria and the special insights revealed by selection committee members.
'We look for organisms with unexpected features or size and those found in  rare or difficult to reach habitats.

We also look for organisms that are especially significant to humans - those that play a certain role in  human habitat or that are considered a close relative.'Carnivorous sponge: A spectacular, large, harp- or lyre-shaped carnivorous sponge discovered in deep water. This carnivorous sponge, called Chondrocladia lyra was found in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of California. It lives in water that averages 3,339 metres deep and has large, harp- or lyre-shaped vanes, with more than 20 parallel vertical branches, often found with a balloon-like ball on the top. This unusual shape maximizes the surface area of the sponge for contact and capture of planktonic preyThis year's top ten came from Peru, the Pacific Ocean off the north east US coast, California, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Panama,  France, New Guinea, Madagascar, Ecuador, Malaysia and China.
Wheeler said: 'I don't know whether to be more astounded by the species discovered each year, or the depths of our ignorance about  biodiversity of which we are a part.
'At the same time we search the  heavens for other earthlike planets, we should make it a high priority  to explore the biodiversity on the most earthlike planet of them all:  Earth.Discovered in the Lomami Basin of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the lesula is an Old World monkey. Discovered in the Lomami Basin of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the lesula is an Old World monkey. It is is only the second species of monkey discovered in Africa in the past 28 years. Scientists first saw the monkey as a captive juvenile in 2007. Researchers describe it as having human-like eyes. Although the forests where the monkeys live are remote, the species is hunted for bush meat and its status is vulnerable Adult male lesula monkeys, found in the Democratic Republic of the Congo is an Old World monkey well known to locals but newly known to science. Adult male lesula monkeys, found in the Democratic Republic of the Congo is an Old World monkey well known to locals but newly known to science. Adult males have a large, bare patch of bright blue skin on the buttocks, testicles and perineum, pictured'With more than eight out of every ten living species awaiting discovery, I am shocked by our ignorance of our very own planet and in  awe at the diversity, beauty and complexity of the biosphere and its  inhabitants.'
Added Prof Wheeler: 'We are calling for a NASA-like mission to discover 10 million species in the next 50 years. This would lead to discovering countless options for a more sustainable future while securing evidence of the origins of the biosphere.'
The announcement, now in its sixth year, coincides with the anniversary of the birth of Carolus Linnaeus - the 18th century Swedish botanist responsible for the modern system of scientific names and classifications.Lilliputian Violet Viola lilliputana Country: Peru Hanging Around in the Jurassic Juracimbrophlebia ginkgofolia Country: China The world's smallest violet, pictured left, is only found in the Intermontane Plateau of the high Andes of Peru. It is called the Lillipution violet after named after the race of  little people on the island of Lilliput in Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s  Travels. The fossil shown on the right is of a hanging fly and was found along with preserved leaves of a gingko-like tree, in Middle Jurassic deposits from China’s Inner  Mongolia. This discovery is a rare example of an insect mimicking a gymnosperm 165 million years ago

Offline bonajazz

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« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2013, 02:36:40 AM »
That was interesting...
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Offline DeathsDoor

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« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2013, 09:30:43 AM »
Adult male lesula monkeys, found in the Democratic Republic of the Congo is an Old World monkey well known to locals but newly known to science. :lol:
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Offline BuckNekkid

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« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2013, 10:12:14 AM »