From DPA news agency in Germany:
Biologists identify 43 new insect species in Madagascar
Bonn (Germany), Sep 11 German biologists have reportedly identified 43 new species of insects and millipedes on the island of Madagascar.
Eleven new ‘giant pill millipedes‘ – those capable of rolling themselves up into a ball – were the highlight of the find, according to the Koenig Museum in Bonn, which backed the expedition.
Some of them are as large as an orange when rolled up – a world record – and were already on earth during the dinosaur era.
By eating dead leaves and wood, the millipedes make an essential contribution to generating humus in the soil that promotes plant growth.
The museum said almost all of the island’s forests were under serious threat and that in some cases unique biotopes were in danger of being permanently lost.
It warned that some species could die out even before being discovered by researchers.
A new species of the giant pill-millipede genus Sphaerobelum Verhoeff, 1924 from northern Thailand, with an extensive description and molecular characters
(Diplopoda: Sphaerotheriida: Zephroniidae): here.
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- Photos: “Glam Rock” Lizard Among New Madagascar Species (vivianawebsite.wordpress.com)
- What Does a Lemur Eat? | eHow.com (vivianawebsite.wordpress.com)
- VIDEO: Leggiest millipede caught on camera (bbc.co.uk)
- A Millipede That (Almost) Lives Up To The Name (npr.org)