Guest blog post: New ectoparasite records from Honduras came from bats recorded since 2015

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  • March 23, 2021
  • Guest blog post by Manfredo Alejandro Turcios-Casco Since its foundation in 2015, the research team “The Big Bat Theory” has filled important information gaps regarding bats and their ectoparasites in Honduras. We started as just bachelor students mist-netting bats in our university (Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Honduras- UNAH) in our free time. Then we studied […]

    Two species and a single name: ‘Double identity’ revealed in a venomous banana spider

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  • March 9, 2021
  • Spiders from the genus Phoneutria – also known as banana spiders – are considered aggressive and among the most venomous spiders in the world, with venom that has a neurotoxic action. These large nocturnal spiders usually inhabit environments disturbed by humans and are often found in banana plantations in the Neotropical region.  One of these […]

    Trendy on eight legs: Jumping spider named after fashion czar Karl Lagerfeld

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  • July 2, 2019
  • New to science species of Australian jumping spider was named after Hamburg-born fashion icon Karl Lagerfeld (1933-2019) after the arachnid reminded its discoverers of the designer. Intrigued by its distinct ‘downplayed’ black-and-white colours, the Hamburg-Brisbane-Melbourne team likened the spider’s appearance to Lagerfeld’s trademark style: his white hair and Kent collar that contrasted with the black […]

    As uniform as cloned soldiers, new spiders were named after the Stormtroopers in Star Wars

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  • March 14, 2019
  • The new species are amongst the very first bald-legged spiders recorded in Colombia Despite being widely distributed across north and central South America, bald-legged spiders had never been confirmed in Colombia until the recent study by the team of Drs Carlos Perafan and Fernando Perez-Miles (Universidad de la Republica, Uruguay) and William Galvis (Universidad Nacional […]

    Right under our noses: A novel lichen-patterned spider found on oaks in central Spain

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  • August 8, 2018
  • It happened again, a previously unknown spider species, whose home is a strongly humanised European country, appears to have been quietly and patiently waiting to get noticed until very recently. Living on the trunks of oaks in Spain, the new species would have probably been spotted decades ago, had it not been for its sophisticated […]

    Out of the darkness: A new spider found deep within an Indiana cave

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  • June 28, 2018
  • Spiders are ubiquitous within our forests, fields, and backyards. Although you may be used to seeing the beautiful yellow and black spiders of the genus Argiope in your garden, large ground-scurrying wolf spiders in your yard, or spindly cellar spiders in your basement, this new sheet-web-building spider is probably one you haven’t seen before. The […]

    Six new species of goblin spiders named after famous goblins and brownies

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  • June 21, 2018
  •   Fictional characters originally ‘described’ by famous English children’s writer Enid Blyton have given their names to six new species of minute goblin spiders discovered in the diminishing forests of Sri Lanka. The goblins Bom, Snooky and Tumpy and the brownies Chippy, Snippy and Tiggy made their way from the pages of: “The Goblins Looking-Glass” […]

    Dispatch from the field II: Students describe an elusive spider while stationed in Borneo

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  • April 3, 2018
  • A mystery has long shrouded the orb-weaving spider genus Opadometa, where males and females belonging to one and the same species look nothing alike. Furthermore, the males appear to be so elusive that scientists still doubt whether both sexes are correctly linked to each other even in the best-known species. Such is the case for Opadometa sarawakensis – […]

    Spider eat spider: Scientists discover 18 new spider-hunting pelican spiders in Madagascar

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  • January 11, 2018
  • In 1854, a curious-looking spider was found preserved in 50 million-year-old amber. With an elongated neck-like structure and long mouthparts that protruded from the “head” like an angled beak, the arachnid bore a striking resemblance to a tiny pelican. A few decades later when living pelican spiders were discovered in Madagascar, arachnologists learned that their […]

    Seven new spider species from Brazil named after 7 famous fictional spider characters

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  • January 10, 2018
  • Several literary classics from the fantasy genre are further immortalised and linked together thanks to a Brazilian research team who named seven new spiders after them. Spider characters from A Song of Ice and Fire, Harry Potter, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, H. P. Lovecraft’s The Call of Cthulhu and the children’s favourite […]