Top 10 New Species!

ENVIRONMENT

Large and small, beautiful and bizarre, researchers have released the top ten new species for 2018. (CNN)

What were the top ten two years ago?

Teachers, scroll down for a quick list of key resources in our Teachers Toolkit.

Top 9 New Species (I forgot the shrimp!)
Photographs courtesy College of Environmental Science and Forestry

Discussion Ideas

Amphipod

Epimeria quasimodo was named for Quasimodo, the title character in Victor Hugo’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame.
Photograph by Cédric d’Udekem d’Acoz, copyright Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, courtesy College of Environmental Science and Forestry

Epimeria quasimodo, a tiny crustacean, is abundant in the frigid waters of the ocean surrounding Antarctica.

 

Heterotrophic Plant

These pretty purple flowers appear during a short blooming period between September and October.
Photograph by Takaomi Sugimoto, courtesy College of Environmental Science and Forestry

Sciaphila sugimotoi is critically endangered species of heterotrophic plant, meaning it is not photosynthetic and derives nutrients from other sources.

 

Snailfish

At only 112 millimeters (4 inches) in length, this snailfish is actually the top predator in its food web.
Photograph by Mackenzie Gerringer, University of Washington. ©Schmidt Ocean Institute, courtesy College of Environmental Science and Forestry

No fish has ever been recorded swimming at depths deeper than Pseudoliparis swirei—6,898 and 7,966 meters (22,000 and 26,000 feet).

 

Cave Beetle

This species of cave beetle is distinguished by its extremely elongated head and prothorax.
Photograph by Sunbin Huang and Mingyi Tian, courtesy College of Environmental Science and Forestry

Xuedytes bellus is the newest species of cave beetle to be identified in the karst landscape of China’s Guangxi Province.

 

Protist

This microbe was discovered in an aquarium in San Diego; its natural geographic origin is unknown.
Photograph by Denis V. Tiknonenkov, courtesy College of Environmental Science and Forestry

Ancoracysta twista is a lonely protist—scientists aren’t sure what its closest relatives are.

 

Tree

Only 25 individual specimens of this Atlantic forest tree are known to exist.
Photograph by Gwilym P. Lewis, courtesy College of Environmental Science and Forestry

Dinizia jueirana-facao is one of the larger trees breaking through the canopy of the incredibly biodiverse Atlantic Forest.

 

Marsupial Lion

This marsupial lion roamed the forest habitat of north-central Australia more than 23 million years ago.
Illustration by Peter Schouten, courtesy College of Environmental Science and Forestry

Wakaleo schouteni, a marsupial lion, is known only through fossils.

 

Orangutan

Tapanuli orangutans are one of three species of orangutans—and the most endangered.
Photograph by Andrew Walmsley, courtesy College of Environmental Science and Forestry

Only an estimated 800 Pongo tapanuliensis individuals exist in a fragmented habitat spread over about 1,000 square kilometers (250,000 acres).

 

Beetle

This is not an ant! Well, not entirely. The circled part is a species of beetle adapted to look just like the abdomen of an ant.
Photograph © D. Kronauer, courtesy College of Environmental Science and Forestry

Nymphister kronaueri is a camouflaged hitchhiker. It blends in seamlessly with army ants, and when the ant colony moves, the beetle uses its mouthparts to grab the skinny portion of an ant abdomen and hang on, letting the ant do the walking.

 

Bacteria

The new species of bacteria is nicknamed “Venus’ hair.”
Photograph by Miquel Canals, University of Barcelona, Spain, courtesy College of Environmental Science and Forestry

Thiolava veneris was the first species to colonize the toxic area surrounding an underwater volcano.

 

How are the “top ten” new species decided?

 

TEACHERS TOOLKIT

CNN: Meet the top 10 new species of 2018

College of Environmental Science and Forestry: 2018 Top 10 New Species

One thought on “Top 10 New Species!

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