Australian spider named after David Attenborough

Aug 04, 2012
File photo shows British scientist and broadcaster David Attenborough in London in November 2011. A newly discovered Australian spider measuring little more than a millimetre in length has been named after Attenborough, reports said Saturday.

A newly discovered Australian spider measuring little more than a millimetre in length has been named after celebrated British scientist and broadcaster David Attenborough, reports said Saturday.

The minuscule arachnid, which is found only on Horn Island, in Australia's Torres Strait, was named prethopalpus attenboroughi by its discoverers, according to Alec Coles, head of the Western Australian Museum.

"Prethopalpus is commonly known as a goblin , making this species Attenborough's goblin spider," ABC reported Coles as saying.

Attenborough was presented with the honour at a ceremony in Perth where he was given a framed picture of the spider.

Coles said Attenborough, 86, was chosen for his love of nature and renowned ability to make science accessible over a career spanning six decades.

"It is incredible that in the 21st century our scientists are still documenting and describing so many new species," said Coles.

It's not the first time the naturalist has received such an honour -- a 380-million-year-old fossil found in in 2008 of a prehistoric mother fish was named materpiscis attenboroughi.

Explore further: Research shows impact of BMR on brain size in fish

Related Stories

Fossil fish shows oldest live birth

Feb 25, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- A 380-million-year-old fossil fish that shows an unborn embryo and umbilical cord has been discovered, scientists report in the journal Nature.

Largest spider fossil found in China

Apr 21, 2011

(PhysOrg.com) -- According to Paul Selden, the director of the Paleontological Institute at the University of Kansas, he and his team members have discovered the largest spider fossil. The fossil was discovered ...

Flying jewels spell death for baby spiders

Mar 02, 2012

Spider flies are a rarely collected group of insects. Adults are considered important pollinators of flowers, while larvae live as internal parasitoids of juvenile spiders. Eight genera are recorded in Aust ...

Spectacular discoveries in New Guinea

Jun 27, 2011

A frog with fangs, a blind snake and a round-headed dolphin are among more than 1,000 new species recently found on the incredible Melanesian island of New Guinea, environment group WWF said.

Recommended for you

Research shows impact of BMR on brain size in fish

Apr 24, 2015

A commonly used term to describe nutritional needs and energy expenditure in humans – basal metabolic rate – could also be used to give insight into brain size of ocean fish, according to new research by Dr Teresa Iglesias ...

Why do animals fight members of other species?

Apr 23, 2015

Why do animals fight with members of other species? A nine-year study by UCLA biologists says the reason often has to do with "obtaining priority access to females" in the area.

Dolphins use extra energy to communicate in noisy waters

Apr 23, 2015

Dolphins that raise their voices to be heard in noisy environments expend extra energy in doing so, according to new research that for the first time measures the biological costs to marine mammals of trying ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.