Waiting to be discovered for more than 100 years—new species of bush crickets

January 19, 2015, Pensoft Publishers
Arostratum oblitum, the new species that has been waiting on museum shelves for over 100 years to be discovered. Credit: Bruno Massa

Museums of Natural History are an important source of evidences of existing variety and diversity of animal species. Many species lie on shelf, waiting for years and years to be discovered. A new study published in the open access journal ZooKeys reveals 4 new genera and 4 new species of bush crickets discovered in museum collections to prove the value of these institutions.

One of the four new bush crickets, Arostratum oblitum, has in fact been waiting for over 100 years to be discovered and described. This curious fact also inspired the name of the to be 'oblitum', which means 'forgotten' translated from Latin.

During his research, the author of this study examined many specimens of Orthoptera Phaneropteridae of sub-Saharan Africa kept in different Natural History Museums across Europe (Berlin, Madrid, Terrasini, etc.).

"My study supported by Synthesys project demonstrates that we have missed many interesting taxa once collected and put in and the forgotten for a long time. Probably many other new species are waiting to be discovered." comments the author of the study, Dr Bruno Massa from the Department of Agricultural and Forest Sciences, University of Palermo.

The new species of bush crickets come from Central Africa, which is one of the Orthoptera richest areas of the world. Even if many studies have been carried out since 1800, this wide geographic region still hides many unknown taxa.

Explore further: Two new species of yellow-shouldered bats endemic to the Neotropics

More information: Massa B (2015) New genera, species and records of Phaneropterinae (Orthoptera, Phaneropteridae) from sub- Saharan Africa. ZooKeys 472: 77-102. DOI: 10.3897/zookeys.472.8575

Related Stories

The unexamined diversity in the 'Coral Triangle'

October 7, 2014

Research on zoantharians, a group of animals related to corals and anemones, by researchers James Reimer of the University of the Ryukyus in Okinawa, Japan, Angelo Poliseno of Universita Politecnica delle Marche in Italy, ...

18th century specimen reveals new South African weevil genus

July 25, 2013

The new weevil genus was discovered during a routine study of some weevil specimens collected by the Swedish botanist and entomologist Carl Peter Thunberg, a disciple of Carl Linnaeus, during his trips in the then Cape Colony ...

Millipede family added to Australian fauna

August 30, 2012

An entire group of millipedes previously unknown in Australia has been discovered by a specialist – on museum shelves. Hundreds of tiny specimens of the widespread tropical family Pyrgodesmidae have been found among bulk ...

New species of small mammal discovered

June 26, 2014

Scientists from the California Academy of Sciences have discovered a new species of round-eared sengi, or elephant-shrew, in the remote deserts of southwestern Africa. This is the third new species of sengi to be discovered ...

Recommended for you

Space-inspired speed breeding for crop improvement

November 16, 2018

Technology first used by NASA to grow plants extra-terrestrially is fast tracking improvements in a range of crops. Scientists at John Innes Centre and the University of Queensland have improved the technique, known as speed ...

0 comments

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.