Five of the Coolest Species Discovered in 2013

These critters have now been added to the 1.2 million species known to science.

By Allison Winter
Jan 15, 2014 11:06 PMNov 12, 2019 5:27 AM
A. R. Mendes Pontes/Federal University of Pernambuco/Brazil


Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news

Biologists have already cataloged and named nearly 1.2 million species, but they’ve just scratched the surface. Some estimates suggest the planet hosts nearly 7 million more creatures that have yet to be identified. These are just a few of the many species new to science in 2013.

Here comes the sun: An intricate wing pattern that includes orange spheres gave the sun moth, Stenoloba solaris, its name. Researchers from Lithuania and Hungary found the moth in the remote Baime Xue mountain range of China’s Yunnan province.

Holy bat genus: The striped bat, Niumbaha superba, found in South Sudan, actually constitutes a new genus: Its slightly shorter wings and more robust teeth earned the bat its own classification, according to a team from Pennsylvania’s Bucknell University.

A. R. Mendes Pontes/Federal University of Pernambuco/Brazil

Holding out hope: The hope porcupine,

Coendou speratus

, lives in trees along Brazil’s Northeastern Atlantic Coast, one of the world’s most threatened habitats. It was discovered by scientists from the country’s Universidade Federal de Pernambuco.

Philippe Verbelen

Hoot, there it is! A unique song tipped off a researcher from the Swedish Museum of Natural History to the Rinjani scops owl, or Otus jolandae, in the Gunung Rinjani National Park on the Indonesian island of Lombok. It had escaped scientific notice for so long because it looks very much like a related species.

Gennadiy Shandikov and Richard Eakin/Zoo Keys

One fish, plunderfish: Fishermen on the hunt for Antarctic toothfish hooked the foot-long hopbeard plunderfish, or Pogonophryne neyelovi, in deep waters. The pointy barbel extending from its chin qualifies it to join a genus including the shortbeard plunderfish, the brainbeard plunderfish and 19 others.

[This article originally appeared in print as "New Species."]

1 free article left
Want More? Get unlimited access for as low as $1.99/month

Already a subscriber?

Register or Log In

1 free articleSubscribe
Discover Magazine Logo
Want more?

Keep reading for as low as $1.99!


Already a subscriber?

Register or Log In

More From Discover
Recommendations From Our Store
Shop Now
Stay Curious
Our List

Sign up for our weekly science updates.

To The Magazine

Save up to 40% off the cover price when you subscribe to Discover magazine.

Copyright © 2024 Kalmbach Media Co.