10 Strange Yet Exciting New Species

The International Institute for Species Exploration at Arizona State University has just recently published its top 10 list of newly discovered species. The list is a fascinating collection of strange (such as a plant in the shape of a football that feeds on rats), trippy (such as a psychedelic creature that lives in the depths of the ocean), and sexually suggestive species (a modestly endowed, foul-smelling fungus).

We Want an Attenborough’s Pitcher, Not a Belly Itcher

The newly found plant has been given the name Attenborough’s pitcher, which conjures up memories of the sport of baseball. However, the form and size of this plant are more comparable to those of a football. This kind of plant was first found on the island of Palawan in the Philippines. It has a long pitcher that secretes fluids that attract insects and rats, which the plant subsequently consumes.

Bombardier Worms: Mean, Green Bombers

The bombardier worm, also called the “green bomber,” was found in the ocean depths off the coast of California. It is also known by this name. When they are in danger, adult and juvenile bombardier worms may detach modified, lighting gills (see photos at the top of the page). These gills are designed to frighten away possible predators, which is how these swimming worms got their great names.

Don’t Be Such A Bug-Eating Slug All of Your Life

This slug, which consumes insects, lives up to its name. You seem to be confused about what the big deal is. This insect-eating slug was found in the Gulf of Thailand. It is undoubtedly one of a kind, as shown by the fact that it was placed in its own family of slugs due to the fact that all other slugs consume algae.

Straight Out of Transylvania: The Dracula Minnow

When I go fishing for larger keepers, I’m not sure that I’ll be employing the Dracula minnow any time in the near future. The Dracula minnow has fangs that look like teeth, which gives it a fearsome appearance when seen up close; however, these fangs are not utilised to drink blood; rather, they are employed in fights with other males of the species.

Killer Sponges: Soaking ‘Em Softly

When it came to being named to the top list of new species, the killer sponge, which was found in the deep sea seas off the coast of New Zealand the previous year, proved to be more than deserving of its moniker. The distinctive structure of the killer sponge, which resembles a skeleton and is spiked, sets it apart from other types of softer sponges. Although it looks to be non-threatening to the naked eye, this sponge is really a carnivore and poses a greater threat than it first appears to.

Omars’ Banded Knifefish: Not What It Appeared to Be

Researchers in Uruguay have been studying the electrical behaviour of this fish (see picture at the top) for more than three decades now in order to better comprehend electrocommunication. However, when this fish was compared with other members of the Gymnotidae family (see other images), it turned out that Omars’ banded knifefish was actually its own unique species that had been misidentified the entire time. This discovery was made after the fish was compared with other members of the family. Oops! What a wasteful way to dispose of the results of thirty years of study!

Psychedelic Frogfish: “I’m Freaking Out Man!”

Histiophryne psychedelica, which was first found in Indonesia and is more widely known as the psychedelic frogfish, is not only remarkable for having a flat face but also for presenting a peculiar pattern of concentric rings that cover its whole body. This fish was discovered in Indonesia. I don’t know about you, but I’m quite sure that the psychedelic frogfish would have managed to win the hearts of more than a few hippies back in the day.

Coming Soon to IKEA: The Uber Orb-Weaver

The term “uber-orb weaver” makes no sense whatsoever. It turns out to be a kind of spider known as the Komac’s golden orb spider, which is a member of the family Nephilidae. This family is well-known for building some of the biggest webs that can be seen anywhere. The super orb-weaver, also known as Nephila komaci, was just recently found in South Africa. One of the most intriguing aspects of this recently discovered species is that the females have body lengths that are five times greater than those of males.

Can You Do Me A Small Favor?

No, I’m not talking about getting a loan of any money; rather, I’m interested in knowing about a new species of stinkhorn fungus that was just discovered on a remote island nation in West Africa. This two-inch fungus, which is also known as Phallus drewesil, is distinguished not only by its sexually suggestive appearance but also by a terrible stench that attracts flies to disperse its spores throughout the environment.

Udderly Weird Yam: A Name That Doesn’t Disappoint

Although it was found in Madagascar, the udderly strange yam is indeed edible. However, given to its revolting appearance and severely endangered status, it is very unlikely that it will ever be served at my Thanksgiving dinner table. Visit the Arizona State University International Institute for Species Exploration for more information about the udderly odd yam and the other top new species.

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