Monday, March 7, 2016

Lazarus Species: Three creatures that came back from the dead

Hey Everyone!

So last week in class, John mention lazarus species which are species believed to be extinct but reappear later. I was curious about some of the recently discovered lazarus species. Here are some of the coolest ones I found.

1. Omura's Whale
Very little is known about this baleen whale as the species was only identified in 2003 and purely form dead specimens. The whale was believed to be extinct but a pod of small fin whales were sighted off the coast of Madagascar in 2013 and after a DNA test the pod was confirmed as Omura's Whale. It resembles a small fin whale and is actually commonly known as the dwarf fin whale since it only grows to about 10m long. They are most commonly found in the eastern Indian Ocean around Indonesia but sighting have been confirmed of the east coast of Africa as well. 


2. Coelacanth


Believed to have gone extinct around the time of the dinosaurs, the Coelacanth was rediscovered in 1938 off the coast of South Africa. This lobbed fin fish is more closely related to lungfish, reptiles and mammals than to the common ray-finned fish. Fun fact: The Coelacanth braincase is 98.5% filled with fat and only 1.5% of the braincase contains brain tissue.

3. Lord Howe Stick Insect


The Lord Howe stick insect, also called the tree lobster due to its freakishly large size, was believed to have gone extinct by 1920 but then was rediscovered in 2001. (lucky us) It is believed to be the rarest insect in the world since only 24 individuals are known to be living on the remnant of a volcano know as Ball's Pyramid off the coast of Australia. These giant insects can grow up to 6in long and although they don't have wings they can run very fast.

If you guys want to learn about a couple more rediscovered Lazarus species check out this link:

Enjoy,
Emma

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