Monday 23 May 2016

Ugliest to Most Rock 'n' Roll: Top Newfound Species Named

By Kacey Deamer, Staff Writer | May 23, 2016 02:16pm ET

From an insect with a raunchy name to one of the ugliest species in the world, there were approximately 18,000 newfound species named last year.

With such a large number of species discovered each year, the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF) has put together a list of the "Top 10 New Species," celebrating species named in the previous year, since 2008. This year's list honors 10 species representative of global biodiversity.

In the absence of a global species registry, the annual list is a reflection the Earth’s diverse species population, said Quentin Wheeler, ESF president and founder of the school's International Institute for Species Exploration (IISE).

"We want to bring attention to the biodiversity crisis," Wheeler told Live Science. "We want to bring attention to how little we know about species on our own planet. And we want to bring attention to the fact that this science is going on and every day new species are being discovered."

Given the thousands of species discovered each year — and an estimated 10 million species yet to be discovered, five times the number already known — Wheeler said the top-10 list includes species that "stand out in some way." This could include the largest or smallest of a species, the last known living, or first discovered — or, in the case of this year's list, the ugliest.

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