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30 newly discovered species caught on camera

  • 30 newly discovered species caught on camera
    1/ Terry Gosliner 2018 California Academy of Sciences

    30 newly discovered species caught on camera

    It is easy to forget that new species are being discovered every day. Did you now that in the past year alone, more than 200 new species of plants and animals were discovered? Scientists and other biodiversity specialists registered these 30 additions to Earth’s vast list of flora and fauna, scouring obscure habitats over five continents and three oceans to seek them out.

    The new discoveries may hold the key to groundbreaking innovations in science and technology, or they may simply be fascinating to look at. Only 10% of the world’s species have been discovered—imagine what they’ll find next.

    Read on to learn about worker ants from Madagascar, sea slugs in Indonesia, and glowing ‘’lantern sharks.”

    You might also like: 46 of the world's most endangered species

  • Blakea echinata
    2/ J. E. De Gracia

    Blakea echinata

    Blakea echinata, a plant from the Caribbean rainforest of Panama, is distinguished by wide leaves with waxy surfaces and hair-like trichomes. This species has white trichomes that turn yellow-brown when dry.

  • Camponotus raina
    3/ E.F. Jones and The Herpetologists' League

    Camponotus raina

    These worker ants are found mainly in tropical forests, like the rainforests of Madagascar. The newly discovered arthropods have heads that are longer than they are wide, and look similar to members of their cousin species Camponotus tanosy.

  • Camponotus tanosy
    4/ Michelle Esposito

    Camponotus tanosy

    These worker ants from Madagascar have a similar appearance to members of species Camponotus raina, but those belonging to Camponotus tanosy have five teeth. Their cranial nerve structure is also slightly different, lacking the plate of tissue seen in Camponotus tanosy.

  • Carebara placida
    5/ Frank Azorsa

    Carebara placida

    A third species of ant from Madagascar, members of Carebara placida travel from rainforest to mountain forests at a height of 600 meters. They sport distinguishing 10-segmented antennae.

  • Chinja chinja
    6/ Nikolaj Scharff

    Chinja chinja

    Chinja chinja spiders can be found in Tanzania’s Eastern Arc mountains. All members of this genus have a third tarsal claw, absence of claw tufts, and a calamistrum: the row of specialized leg bristles used to refine bands of silk.

  • Chrysiptera uswanasi
    7/ Mark Erdmann

    Chrysiptera uswanasi

    Indonesia’s Chrysiptera uswanasi, or damselfish, is considered a micro-endemic species—their range is restricted to one very specific location. This characteristic makes them vulnerable to extinction. These fish are distinguished by their color pattern, and have a 9.3% difference in mitochondrial pattern from their nearest relative.

  • Doriprismatica balut
    8/ Mark Erdmann

    Doriprismatica balut

    Doriprismatica balut is a sea slug from the Philippines, with a whitish-brown body and dark gray gills. These mollusks also have a mottled white foot.

  • Etmopterus marshae
    9/ Terry Gosliner 2018 California Academy of Sciences

    Etmopterus marshae

    Relative of the ninja shark, Marsha’s Lanternshark is known for its "intricate pattern, flank marking, and beautiful appearance.” These sharks also have tiny light organs along their bellies that produce bioluminescence.

  • Eviota maculosa
    10/ Dave Catania

    Eviota maculosa

    This dwarf goby is found in the Western Pacific Ocean, named for the spotted pattern found on the male’s first dorsal fin. It differs from its nearest relative, Eviota punctulata, by pigmentation patterns on the fins.


  • Fritzschia rupestris
    11/ Mark Erdmann

    Fritzschia rupestris

    This endangered flower from Brazil is identified by its sprawling habitat, the absence of trichomes (hairs) on vegetative and floral organs, and bright magenta petals.


  • Gravesia parvula
    12/ P. L. Viana

    Gravesia parvula

    This flowering plant from southeastern Madagascar is considered endangered. Its seedlings emerge up to four days after planting.

  • Gymnothorax longinaris
    13/ S. Razafimandimbison

    Gymnothorax longinaris

    This moray eel is found in Indonesia as well as Australia. It’s distinguished by its color pattern and enlarged posterior nasal appendages.


  • Hippocampus japapigu
    14/ Mark Erdmann

    Hippocampus japapigu

    This species of pygmy seahorse from Japan was named for its horse-shaped head. Seahorses are unique among fish in that they are monogamous, and mate for life.


  • Hypselodoris confetti
    15/ Richard Smith

    Hypselodoris confetti

    This sea slug from Papua New Guinea is named "confetti” for the large yellow spots and smaller blue or black spots scattered across its body. It is also found in Indonesia, the Philippines, and Hong Kong.

  • Hypselodoris iba
    16/ Terry Gosliner 2018 California Academy of Sciences

    Hypselodoris iba

    Another species of sea slug, Hypselodoris iba is found in a range of color forms, usually violet or milky white. It has been confused in the past with Hypselodoris bullocki, but has been found recently to be merely similar, rather than a close relative.

  • Hypselodoris melanesica
    17/ Terry Gosliner © 2018 California Academy of Sciences

    Hypselodoris melanesica

    Also previously confused with Hypselodoris bullocki, Hypselodoris melanesica are purple in color and found in Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands. Their purple hue helps the sea slugs avoid predators.

  • Hypselodoris rositoi
    18/ Terry Gosliner 2018 California Academy of Sciences

    Hypselodoris rositoi

    These pink sea slugs are found in the Philippines. These strange beauties are among the 17 new species of sea slug to be discovered in 2018.

  • Hypselodoris variobranchia
    19/ Terry Gosliner 2018 California Academy of Sciences

    Hypselodoris variobranchia

    These regal-looking sea slugs are lavender in color, and sport a tall gill pocket that resembles a crown. They are found in Australia, Japan, Indonesia, Philippines, and Malaysia.


  • Miconia rheophytica
    20/ Saúl E. Hoyos-Gómez

    Miconia rheophytica

    This endangered flowering plant from Colombia produces bright blue berries in its mature state. Its home in the Colombian Andes is threatened by flooding from a proposed hydroelectric dam.


  • Milnesium burgessi
    21/ Elizabeth Cole

    Milnesium burgessi

    This new species of tardigrade, or water bear, was discovered in 2018 in eastern Kansas, and named for young adventurer, philanthropist, and tardigrade-supporter, James Burgess.


  • Ophichthus naga
    22/ Peter Psomadakis

    Ophichthus naga

    These snake eels were discovered off Myanmar in the Indian Ocean. The species features a unique vertebral number, dorsal fin orientation, and tooth arrangement, and are dark brown in color.


  • Parmaturus nigripalatum
    23/ Fahmi

    Parmaturus nigripalatum

    Parmaturus nigripalatum are deep-sea filetail catsharks from Indonesia. Among other differences from its closest relative, it has a dark-colored mouth and a much lower tooth count than other Parmaturus species. They are the second Parmaturus species to be found in Indonesian waters.


  • Pentapodus berryae
    24/ Mark Erdmann

    Pentapodus berryae

    This species of whiptail fish from Papua New Guinea lives in steep outer reef slopes below 60 meters. It can be differentiated from P. aureofasciatus and P. trivittatus by its larger eye and lack of enlarged canines in the lower jaw.


  • Pison orbitale
    25/ Erin Prado

    Pison orbitale

    This is one of about 10,000 wasp species found in Australia. A third of the genus Pison is located in Australia.


  • Planonasus indicus
    26/ K.V. Akhilesh

    Planonasus indicus

    The pygmy false catshark is named for its flat nose ("planus” meaning flat and "nasus” meaning nose). This deep-sea shark, the first such discovery since 2011, was found off the coast of India, north of Sri Lanka.


  • Plectranthias ahiahiata
    27/ Luiz Rocha 2017 California Academy of Sciences

    Plectranthias ahiahiata

    This species of perchlet resides in a coral ecosystem at Rapa Nui (Easter Island) in the South Pacific. Its closest relative is Plectranthias winniensis.


  • Sanguirana acai
    28/ Rafe Brown

    Sanguirana acai

    This is a species of stream-dwelling frog from central Philippines. Many frogs of this genus are considered endangered.


  • Selenopidae anacaona
    29/ Sarah Crews 2018 California Academy of Sciences

    Selenopidae anacaona

    This is one of two new species of spiders discovered on Hispaniola in 2018. The other species is S. caonabo.


  • Tosanoides aphrodite
    30/ Luiz Rocha 2018 California Academy of Sciences

    Tosanoides aphrodite

    This neon fish hails from the twilight zone of St. Paul’s Rocks, Brazil. It is pink and yellow in color, and is the only fish of its kind to be found in the Atlantic rather than the Pacific Ocean.


  • Trimma meityae
    31/ Mark Erdmann

    Trimma meityae

    This pygmy goby from New Zealand has distinct blue coloring above its eye. It was named for Indonesian conservationist Meity Mongdong.


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