Following on from last year’s “Bless You!” post (29/5/12) here is the 2013 list of the top ten new species discovered in the last year, as compiled by the International Institute For Species Exploration (http://species.asu.edu).
We have a fossilised species of hangingfly from China (does it count as a new species if it no longer exists?), Semachrysa jade (a green lacewing from Malaysia), Lucihormetica luckae (a luminescent cockroach from Ecuador), Eugenia petrikensis (a two metre high myrtle shrub from Madagascar), Paedophryne amanuensis (a frog from New Guinea which, at 7.7 mm long, is officially the world’s smallest vertebrate), Ochroconis lascauxensis (a black fungus found associated with Paleolithic rock art on a cave wall in France), a species of snail-eating snake from Panama, the lesula monkey from the Democratic Republic of Congo, the carnivorous lyre sponge found in deep water (average 3399 metres) off the California coast, and the Lilliputian violet from Peru.
In a world so covered by the human footprint it continues to amaze me how little we really know and how much is still to be discovered.
Dr. F. Bunny
Semachrysa jade Lucihormetica luckae
Paedophryne amanuensis Lesula monkey with remarkably human-looking face.
Snail-eating snake Lyre sponge