New curiously scaled beetle species from New Britain named after ‘Star Wars’ Chewbacca

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  • April 26, 2016
  • Chewbacca, the fictional ‘Star Wars’ character, has given his name to a new species of flightless beetle, discovered in New Britain, Papua New Guinea. Although Trigonopterus chewbacca was only one of the four black new weevil beetles found during the expedition, it stood out with its curious scales, which made the authors think of Han […]

    The Castaway: New monitor lizard fills top-order predator role on remote Pacific island

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  • February 25, 2016
  • Separated by several hundred kilometres from its next of kin, a new species of blue-tailed monitor lizard unique to the remote Mussau Island has been described. Unknown to science until recently and formally termed the “isolated”, it is the only large-sized land-living predator and scavenger native to the island. Dubbed a “biogeographical oddity” by its […]

    Two new zoantharian species found on eunicid worms in the dark in the Indo-Pacific ocean

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  • February 11, 2016
  • While studying the abundant, yet poorly known fauna of the zoantharian Epizoanthus genus in the Indo-Pacific Ocean, Japanese graduate student Hiroki Kise and Dr. James Davis Reimer, both affiliated with University of the Ryukyus, Japan, focused on examining the species living on eunicid worm tubes. These Epizoanthus species form colonies and are only found living […]

    The scaled king and his knight: 2 new giant bent-toed gecko species from New Guinea

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  • The extremely complex geological history of New Guinea has allowed many of its animals and plants the chance to grow different enough to make a name for themselves. In the case of two newly described and unusually large gecko species – only a noble name would do. The two new species whose names respectively mean […]