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Check out some of the strange species discovered by science in 2021 |  Biodiversity

Check out some of the strange species discovered by science in 2021 | Biodiversity

The abundance of species on the planet is huge, it is estimated that only 20% of them have already been described, that is, everything indicates that science is just beginning to find and catalog all species on Earth. In the midst of a serious loss crisis Biodiversity, threatening ecosystems around the world, in 2021 hundreds of new species were discovered.

Only the Natural History Museum in London, for example, identified 552. With international travel restricted due to the Covid-19 pandemic, museum scientists were unable to conduct field searches, and thus focused on studying and describing specimens that had already been collected, but not identified and named correctly.

Among them are four new species of dinosaurs. “It has been a great year to describe new dinosaurs, especially from the UK,” he said. Watchman Susanna Maidment, senior researcher in paleobiology at the museum, who helped describe some of the new discoveries. “While we have known about the UK’s dinosaur heritage for more than 150 years, the application of new technologies and new data from around the world is helping us uncover the hidden diversity of British dinosaurs,” he added.

But not only the new prehistoric giants of Europe were classified. In Brazil, scientists have identified the first carnivorous dinosaur found in the city of Monte Alto, which is considered the land of Brazilian dinosaurs, where there are many fossil sites. According to newly discovered studies, Kurupi itaata It searched for its prey in the territory of São Paulo and reached a height of about 5 meters.

A new species of carnivorous dinosaur has been discovered in São Paulo – Photo: Julia d’Oliveira/Divulgação/Rights reserved

“With the bones that we found, in this case, the pelvis, 3 vertebrae, and there are some that we haven’t identified yet, it was possible to do a genetic analysis, to determine which family the animal belonged to, and it was also possible to see it,” said Fabiano Vidio, the paleontologist in charge. About the research and co-author of the scientific publication of the findings, which can be read in full in the journal Journal of Geosciences in South America (In English).

Also in São Paulo, researchers from the State University of Campinas (Unicamp) described the formation of a new plant species, the beach orchid. Epidendrum fulgens. The flower is abundant on the coast of SP and on oceanic islands such as the Alcatraz archipelago, 35 kilometers from the center of São Sebastião.

Epidendrum fulgens charms with shades of yellow and orange – Photo: Unicamp/Divulgação

“For the first time in Brazil, and perhaps in the world, we were able to detect signs of reproductive isolation between plant groups on the coast and on the island. We actually expected the flora on the island to be genetically different; it was discovered when we tried to cross them with those on the mainland. In addition to differentiation Higher, reproductive biology experiments revealed that island plants lost the ability to reproduce with those on the mainland, which indicates that a new species formation process is in progress,” said Fabio Pinheiro, a professor at the Institute of Biology (IB-Unicamp) and one of those responsible for the study. , associated with a FAPESP funded project.

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In the Amazon, a new species of monkey has been discovered in the “arc of deforestation” region, where there is nearly a third of all deforestation rates. baptized from Miko Schneiderprimates live at higher altitudes in the Juruena and Teles-Pires river basins.

Mico schneideri is a new species of snail discovered in the Amazon – Photo: Rodrigo Costa-Araújo et al

The discovery was made by a team of researchers from the Federal University of Amazonas (UFAM), the Emilio Guildi Museum of Paranes and the Federal University of Mato Grosso (UFMT). describe the M. Schneider Based on the monkey monkey (marmosets) that has been studied since 1995, but is wrongly classified as a species. Emilia.

In the Atlantic Forest, researchers describe and categorize a new species of frog smaller than a 10-cent coin. A new pingo-de-ouro frog has been found in the Serra do Mar district of São Paulo, which is located around one of the world’s largest urban areas. “[Isso] It shows how much we still have to discover our biodiversity, even as cities age, even with all the difficulties of conservation and protection of biodiversity, we still have good surprises,” noted biologist Leo Malagoli, Director of Protected Areas at Fundação Florestal de São Paulo and co-author to study.

Golden bingo frog illumination of dorsal bone plates under ultraviolet light – Photo: Juliane PC Monteiro / Divulgação

In the entomological world, researchers at the Museum of Zoology at the University of São Paulo have decided to name a new species of ants named this year in honor of the Brazilian woman. Among those honored for this scientific discovery are human rights advisor and activist Marielle Franco, who was murdered in 2018, writer Clarice Lispector and footballer Merildes Maciel Motta, better known as Formiga. The list also includes Dandara dos Palmares, who was married to a zombie and fought slavery, and Margarida Maria Alves, the first woman to become a union leader in Brazil.

Entomologist Mônica Ulysséa’s initiative seeks to draw attention to gender inequality, which also occurs in laboratories, as well as glorify and appreciate the lives and work of remarkable women. “Giving names to these animals also means recognizing the diversity present in a particular place. Knowing this, it is possible to determine if a species is endemic to an area, for example,” Mônica told Jornal da USP.

New species around the world

Although a species may be new to science, this does not necessarily mean that it has not been found by humans or has not been named. He said, “Many of the new species in science are already known and used by the people in their area of ​​origin – the people who were their primary guardians and often had incomparable local knowledge.” mongabay Director of Science for the Royal Botanic Gardens, Alexandre Antonelli.

This year, researchers concluded that a group of whales in the Gulf of Mexico that look like Bryde’s whales is actually a new species, which they named Balaenoptera rice. The discovery was made possible by genetic data and the study of the stranded whale’s body. Scientists estimate that only 33 individuals of the new species are still alive and that these whales are threatened by ship traffic, plastic waste, and oil and gas exploration in the Gulf.

A rice whale swimming in the Gulf of Mexico – Photo: NOAA

In the Nimba Mountains of Guinea, West Africa, a group of researchers has found a new species of orange bat that lives in caves and mining tunnels. The species just described have been called Myotus nimbiensis It is believed that these bats are in grave danger. According to Mongabay’s website, Bat Conservation International and local mining company Société des Mines de Fer de Guinée are working to reinforce tunnels and caves so bats have a safe home in the mountains.

Myotis nimbaensis is a new species of bat named after the range in which it is found, the Nimba Mountains in West Africa – Photo: Kendra Snyder/Bat Conservation International

In 2015, a researcher visited the Peak Wilderness rainforest in the central highlands of Sri Lanka and found an as-yet-numbered plant of the genus. Strobilanthes. Known as “Sleeping Beauty,” many of these plants bloom once every 12 years. Therefore, year after year, the researcher returned to this difficult place, waiting for the flowering of the plant. Now, your efforts and patience are finally paying off: Sleeping Beauty Flowers Strobilanthes flourished and revealed a new species, and Strobilanthes medahinnensis.

In Australia, the drag queen Ru Paul was the inspiration to name a new species of ultra-colored fly. The RuPaul fly is part of a new Australian genus called Opaloma (from the Latin words meaning garnet and thorn), and his name was OPlease rupaul. The reason, according to entomologist Brian Lessard, is that they look like “little gems buzzing on the forest floor.”

Fly opaluma rupaul is named after the famous drag queen and TV presenter – Photo: Reproduction of Ru Paul Drag Race / CSIRO

The increasing practice of naming insects after pop culture icons has helped endangered species gain attention amid environmental crises such as climate change, an entomologist with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) said. “There is a new wave of entomologists using popular culture to generate interest in our science and what we do. With bushfire recovery efforts, interest is usually in delicate species such as koalas, but many invertebrates are given no attention and are the primary agents of our ecosystem… It is very important that we study it,” he said. Expert for the Guardian newspaper.

During one of the lockdowns set by the Covid-19 epidemic in India, a master’s student started taking pictures of animals around his house and one of the photos posted on a social network caught the attention of a herpetologist, herpetologist. After conducting scientific investigations, the researchers determined that the specimen photographed by chance was in fact a new species.

“It is interesting to note how an Instagram photo led to the discovery of a snake so beautiful that it was unknown in the world. Ultimately, people want to travel to remote points of biodiversity to find new or rare species, but if one looks in the yard They can find a new species there, herpetologist Zishan Mirza told Mongabai.

Virendar Bhardwaj posted this photo of a snake that was found in his backyard in India on the Internet – Photo: Reproduction / Social Networks