Under Extinction Pressure: Rare Australian bee found after 100 years

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  • February 25, 2021
  • A widespread field search for a rare Australian native bee (Pharohylaeus lactiferus) that had not been recorded for almost a century found the species has been there all along – but is probably under increasing pressure to survive. Prior to this study, only six individuals had been found, with the last published record of this Australian endemic bee species, from 1923 in Queensland.

    Guest blog post: Unique feeding behaviour of Asian kukri snakes gutting frogs and toads

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  • February 18, 2021
  • Guest blog post by Henrik Bringsøe In September 2020, we reported the first evidence for a newly discovered behaviour in snakes, as we provided extensive photographic documentation, demonstrating a macabre feeding strategy of Asian kukri snakes of the species Oligodon fasciolatus, the Small-banded Kukri Snake: a snake cutting open the abdomen of a toad, inserting […]

    New DNA barcoding project aims at tracking down the “dark taxa” of Germany’s insect fauna

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  • February 3, 2021
  • New dynamic article collection at Biodiversity Data Journal is already accumulating the project’s findings About 1.4 million species of animals are currently known, but it is generally accepted that this figure grossly underestimates the actual number of species in existence, which likely ranges between five and thirty million species, or even 100 million.  Meanwhile, a […]

    Eurasian eagle owl diet reveals new records of threatened giant bush-crickets

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  • January 5, 2021
  • Bird diets provide a real treasure for research into the distribution and conservation of their prey, conclude scientists after studying the Eurasian Eagle Owl in southeastern Bulgaria. In their paper, published in the open-access, peer-reviewed journal Travaux du Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle “Grigore Antipa”, they report the frequent presence of the threatened Big-Bellied Glandular Bush-Cricket, and conclude that studies on the Eurasian Eagle Owl could be used to identify biodiversity-rich areas in need of protection.

    King of the Cave: New centipede on top of the food chain in the sulphurous-soaked Movile

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  • December 16, 2020
  • A new species of endemic, troglobiont centipede was discovered by an international team of scientists in the Romanian cave Movile: a unique underground ecosystem, isolated several millions years ago during the Neogene, whose animal life only exists because of the chemosynthetic bacteria. As the largest Movile’s inhabitant, the new species can easily be crowned as the ‘king’ of this ‘hellish’ ecosystem. Aptly named Cryptops speleorex, the cave-dweller is described in the open-access, peer-reviewed journal ZooKeys.

    Scientists took a rare chance to prove we can quantify biodiversity by ‘testing the water’

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  • December 4, 2020
  • Recent study conducted at a UK fishery farm provides new evidence that DNA from water samples can accurately determine fish abundance and biomass Organisms excrete DNA in their surroundings through metabolic waste, sloughed skin cells or gametes, and this genetic material is referred to as environmental DNA (eDNA). As eDNA can be collected directly from […]

    Tiny cave snail with muffin-top waistline rolls out of the dark in Laos

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  • November 16, 2020
  • A new species of tiny cave snail that glistens in the light and has a muffin-top-like bulge, was discovered by Marina Ferrand of the French Club Etude et Exploration des Gouffres et Carrières (EEGC), during the Phouhin Namno caving expedition in Tham Houey Yè cave in Laos in March 2019. The new species, named Laoennea renouardi was described in the open-access, peer-reviewed journal Subterranean Biology.

    Death from below: the first video of a parasitic wasp attacking caterpillar underwater

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  • November 4, 2020
  • Named after fictional monster Godzilla, a parasitic wasp becomes the first observed and filmed to dive underwater for several seconds, in order to attack and pull out caterpillar hosts, so that it can lay its eggs inside them before releasing them back in the water.

    First Australian night bees recorded foraging under the cover of darkness

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  • November 2, 2020
  • Original post by Flinders University, Australia Australian bees are known for pollinating plants on beautiful sunny days, but a new study has identified two species that have adapted their vision for night-time conditions for the first time. The study by a team of ecology researchers has observed night time foraging behaviour by a nomiine (Reepenia […]