frog, animals
The Indonesian Frog

Here are 5 Newly Discovered Creatures You Need to See to Believe

spider, animals
The Cartwheeling Spider

Although we’ve been on this planet for quite some time, there are still new creatures being discovered on a regular basis. In fact, the College of Environmental Science and Forestry has recently composed a list of about 18,000 newly discovered species discovered over the past year.

In honor of their discoveries, the researchers typically release a “Top 10” list each May to align with the birthday of Swedish botanist, Carolus Linnaeus (the “Father of Taxonomy”). This tradition has been going on since 2008, and this year, there are certainly more than a few that you need to read about to believe. Here are five of the most interesting species from the 2015 list.

1. The Cartwheeling Spider

Yep, that’s right — a spider that can cartwheel like a gymnast. But the cebrennus rechenbergi doesn’t do it to attack you. It cartwheels when it needs to speed away from predators in the Moroccan desert.

slug, sea, animals
The Colorful Sea Slug

2. Indonesian Frog

The limnonectes larvaepartus might seem pretty average, but consider its procreation process. The Indonesian frog gives birth to tadpoles in the water, rather than laying fertilized eggs. This makes it the first frog to do so out of more than 6,455 species around the world.

3. Sea Slug

The phyllodesmium acanthorhinum can be found off the coast of Japan, and it glows in beautiful shades of blue, gold and red. Researchers believe that it could be the missing link between sea slugs that eat hydroids and ones that feed on coral.

4. The Dancing Puffer Fish

This fish, known as the torquigener albomaculosus, can create unique, eye-catching designs on the ocean floor by “dancing (or wiggling)” in circles. Many of these designs span up to two meters in width, and they aren’t all for nothing — it’s a mating ritual that the males conduct to attract females.

fish, animals
The Dancing Pufferfish

5. The Feathered Dinosaur

Can an extinct creature still count? Researchers say yes, and the anzu wyliei is officially on the list. Known as the”chicken from hell,” this dinosaur used to have many bird-like features, including feathers. Skeletons have been found in North and South Dakota, confirming its parrot-like beak and hollow bones.

Of course, it’s a little hard to pick just five creatures to highlight, especially when you know there are 18,000 more out there worth exhibiting in great length. Nonetheless, it’s still worth looking at some of the many species that also call our planet home.

And if this isn’t enough for you, don’t worry — there is still plenty left to be discovered.

“We have only begun to explore the astonishing origin, history and diversity of life,” Quentin Wheeler, ESF president, told CTV News.


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