A Biological Discovery: Interesting New Animals

Maria D’Antonio

There are many species finding themselves on the endangered species list or nearly extinct, but there are many more that have yet to be discovered. Here are some of the animals that have been recently discovered in the last two years.

Insects: Sun Moth and Glowing Cockroach to New Species of Ant and Beetle

Nvate new biological species, sun moth glowing cockroach lyre sponge Lesula monkey

This is a male sun moth. The female has yet to be discovered.

The Stenoloba solaris was found in China during an expedition to Yunnan according to Zookeys, an all-access, peer-reviewed journal. This new species of moth, commonly called sun moth, is named for the yellow circles on its wings that resemble the rising sun. Scientists have not yet discovered the female.

The Lucihormetica luckae is a glowing cockroach found in Ecuador according to the International Institute for Species Exploration. Its illumination is sometimes used to mimic toxic click beetles. This species may possibly be endangered because of an eruption from the Tungurahua volcano.

Nvate new biological species, sun moth glowing cockroach lyre sponge Lesula monkey

This is Mozambique’s Melissotarsus emeryi, a species of ant.

The Melissotarsus emeryi was discovered on an expedition in Mozambique’s Gorongosa National Park according to National Geographic. This ant is the only ant that cannot walk up a flat surface. It lives in deep wooden passages.

In the same Mozambique expedition, scientists discovered Cerapterus lacerates according the National Geographic. This beetle has a unique ability. It can generate small explosions by ejecting volatile chemicals from its abdomen.

Mammals and Birds: Chewbacca Bat, Cambodian Tailorbird and the Lesula Monkey

The last highlight of the Mozambique expedition is a curious bat named Triaenops persicus. Far more interesting is its nickname, the Chewbacca bat.

Nvate new biological species, sun moth glowing cockroach lyre sponge Lesula monkey

This is the Cambodian Tailorbird.

The Orthotomus chaktomuk was not discovered in a remote jungle or in a far away forest, instead researchers found this bird in Cambodia’s capital city, Phnom Penh, according to LSU Media. A team of scientists that included Louisiana State University and the University of Kansas declared the bird a new species after a DNA analysis. Also called the Cambodian Tailorbird, this bird is only found in Cambodia and prefers habitats with dense scrub.

Nvate new biological species, sun moth glowing cockroach lyre sponge Lesula monkey

This is the Lesula Monkey.

The Cercopithecus lomamiensis is quite new to science, yet familiar to locals, according to the International Institute for Species Exploration. Also called the Lesula Monkey, this primate stands apart because of its humanlike eyes and resides in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Because it is hunted for meat, it is considered vulnerable.

And the Rest: Snail-Eating Snake, World’s Smallest Frog and Lyre Sponge

Nvate new biological species, sun moth glowing cockroach lyre sponge Lesula monkey

This is a snail-eating snake that is native to Panama.

According to the International Institute for Species Exploration, the Sibon noalamina was discovered in western Panama. This snail-eating snake defends itself by mimicking coral snakes. Unfortunately, it is losing its habitat to mining, and in fact its name is derived from the Spanish phrase “no a la mina,” which translates to “no to the mine.”

Nvate new biological species, sun moth glowing cockroach lyre sponge Lesula monkey

This frog is the smallest known vertebrate.

The same institute named the Paedophryne amauensis as the smallest vertebrate. This tiny frog is found in the wet, tropical forests of New Guinea. On average, adult males and females grow to 7.7 mm.

Nvate new biological species, sun moth glowing cockroach lyre sponge Lesula monkey

This is the Lyre Sponge.

Last but not least, the underwater Chondrocladia lyra is another newly discovered species according to the International Institute for Species Exploration. It is called the Lyre Sponge, since its shaped like a lyre or harp. The Lyre Sponge, found in the northeastern parts of the Pacific Ocean, uses its unique shape to catch plankton with each outgoing structure or vane able to catch prey.

Of course there are a plethora of species, living and extinct, that are being discovered each year. Here was a small taste of the large range of biodiversity that scientists are still trying to discover.

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