Two fish a day keep the mantid coming back to prey: The 1st fishing praying mantis

  • September 20, 2018
  • Commonly known to predate on insects, praying mantises have occasionally been observed to feed on vertebrates, including small birds, lizards, frogs, newts, mice, snakes and turtles. Mostly, such records have either not been scientifically validated or have occurred under induced and human-manipulated circumstances. Nevertheless, no scientific data of mantises preying on fish existed until the […]

    New ‘scaly’ snails species group following striking discoveries from Malaysian Borneo

  • July 10, 2018
  • Six new species of unique land snails whose shells are covered with what look like scales have been described from the biodiversity hotspot of Malaysian Borneo by scientists Mohd Zacaery Khalik, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak, Kasper Hendriks, University of Groningen, Jaap Vermeulen, JK Art & Science, and Prof Menno Schilthuizen, Naturalis Biodiversity Center. Their paper is published in the open access journal ZooKeys. […]

    Journal of Hymenoptera Research links Crocodile Dundee, Toblerone, Game of Thrones & Alien

  • June 26, 2018
  • A myriad of species and genera new to science, including economically important wasps drawing immediate attention because of their amusing names and remarkable physical characters, in addition to work set to lay the foundations for future taxonomic and conservation research, together comprise the latest 64th issue of Journal of Hymenoptera Research (JHR). Two genera (Qrocodiledundee and Tobleronius) named after […]

    In a hole in a tunicate there lived a hobbit: New shrimp species named after Bilbo Baggins

  • June 7, 2018
  • Two new species of tiny symbiotic shrimps are described, illustrated and named by biology student at Leiden University Werner de Gier as part of his bachelor’s research project, supervised by Dr. Charles H. J. M. Fransen, shrimp researcher of Naturalis Biodiversity Center (Leiden, the Netherlands). Inspired by the extremely hairy feet of one of the species, the authors […]

    What is a species? British bird expert develops a math formula to solve the problem

  • May 10, 2018
  • Nature is replete with examples of identifiable populations known from different continents, mountain ranges, islands or lowland regions. While, traditionally, many of these have been treated as subspecies of widely-ranging species, recent studies relying on molecular biology have shown that many former “subspecies” have in fact been isolated for millions of years, which is long […]

    Citizen scientists discover a new water beetle and name it after Leonardo DiCaprio

  • April 30, 2018
  • New animal species are sometimes named after celebrities because of their trademark looks. That’s how we got the blonde-haired Donald Trump moth and the big-armed Arnold Schwarzenegger fly, to name a few. However, some well-known people are enshrined in animal names not for their looks, but rather for what they do for the environment. This is exactly how a […]

    Five new blanket-hermit crab species described 130 years later from the Pacific

  • April 24, 2018
  • Since 1888, a lone crab species living in an extraordinary symbiosis has been considered to be one of its kind At the turn of the twentieth century, two independent marine scientists – JR Henderson in 1888, and A Alcock in 1899, described two unusual blanket-hermit crabs from the Indo-West Pacific. Unlike other hermit crabs, these […]

    Audit finds biodiversity data aggregators ‘lose and confuse’ data

  • April 23, 2018
  • In an effort to improve the quality of biodiversity records, the Atlas of Living Australia (ALA) and the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) use automated data processing to check individual data items. The records are provided to the ALA and GBIF by museums, herbaria and other biodiversity data sources. However, an independent analysis of such records reports that ALA […]