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 […]

    Family of scaffold web spiders increased with ~20% following discovery of 43 new species

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  • October 27, 2016
  • Recent study into spider specimens collected from across China, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and Madagascar over the past 15 years, revealed the striking number of 43 scaffold web spiders that have stayed hidden from science until now. By describing the new species in a paper published in the open access journal ZooKeys, scientists from […]

    Single no more: First females of a Madagascan chameleon described with modern technologies

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  • January 28, 2016
  • The first females of a scarcely known chameleon species from Northeast Madagascar have been described. Because of lack of genetic data, X-ray micro-computed tomography scans of the chameleon’s head were used for species assignment. Regrettably, the habitats of this and many other chameleon species are highly threatened by the ongoing deforestation in Madagascar. The study […]

    A new species and genus of ‘horned necked’ praying mantis from a French museum collection

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  • January 22, 2016
  • While studying the insect collection of the Museum national d’Histoire naturelle, Paris, France, two American scientists uncovered a small, leaf-dwelling praying mantis with unique features collected from Madagascar in 2001. Its distinctive “horned neck” and flattened, cone-like eyes, as well as the location from where it was found, led the researchers to assign the insect to […]