133 New Species Of Plants And Animals Discovered In 2016

First Posted: Dec 28, 2016 03:20 AM EST

Every year scientists discover new species from diverse terrestrial and aquatic habitats all over the world. Scientists at The California Academy Of Sciences in San Francisco added a total of 133 species in the year 2016.

Researchers across the world identified and documented these new species of living organisms, which encompassed 43 ants, 4 spiders, 36 beetles, 6 ants, 1 sand wasp, 6 plants, 1 bee, 1 eel, 23 fishes, 1 shark, 1 skate, 7 nudibranchs, 1 fossil sand dollar, 5 fossil urchins, 1 coral, 1 African lizard and an avian virus.

These new species are the proof that there are still so many habitats that are yet to be explored. Venturing in these unknown regions will help in discovering plants, animals and microbes that have never been explored before. The 133 species discovered in 2016 were the results of relentless work of a dozen scientists from the academy and their numerous international collaborators.

They explored at least five continents, three oceans including extreme habitats such as deserts, hydrothermal vents in deep sea, thick rainforests and mountains, Business Insider reported.

The Canada Journal reported that Dr. Shannon Bennett, Chief of Science at The California Academy of Sciences, remarked that people do not even know half the total number of living organisms on this planet. She also said that, "Biodiversity scientists estimate that we have discovered less than 10% of the species on our planet. Academy scientists tirelessly explore the lesser-known regions of Earth..."

Dr. Bennett further remarked that, "Each of these species, known and as-yet-unknown is a wonder unto itself, but may also hold the key to ground-breaking innovations in science, technology, or society."

Some of the most remarkable animals discovered in 2016 include Grammatonotus brianne, a pink yellow fish, isolated from deep sea coral region and 43 new ant types of the Stigmatomma group, otherwise referred to as "Dracula ants," that were discovered in Madagascar. In addition, gray-haired bee named Thevenetimyia spinosavus, which means "thorny grandfather," a virus that causes beak-bending disorder in birds, armored lizard and coral were also discovered.

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