Newfound Species

Science has identified some 2 million species of plants, animals and microbes on Earth, but scientists estimated there are millions more left to discover, and new species are constantly discovered and described. The most commonly discovered new species are typically insects, a type of animal with a high degree of biodiversity. Newly discovered mammal species are rare, but they do occur, typically in remote places that haven't been well studied previously. Some animals are found to be new species only when scientists peer at their genetic code, because they look outwardly similar to another species — these are called cryptic species. Some newfound species come from museum collections that haven't been previously combed through and, of course, from fossils. Read below for stories about newly discovered species, both alive on Earth today and those that once roamed the planet.
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Latest Articles

Tarantula Photos: Gallery of 'Eight-Legged Teddy Bears'
tarantula, new species
February 4th, 2016
Tarantulas star in a new study that describes 14 new species living in deserts, mountains, and backyard habitats in the southwestern United States.
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Mini T. Rex: 'Welsh Dragon' May Be Earliest Jurassic Dinosaur
jurassic theropod
January 20th, 2016
Two brothers hunting for ichthyosaur fossils along the coast of the United Kingdom came across something far more astounding: The bones of what may be the earliest known dinosaur from the Jurassic period in the U.K., and possibly even the world.
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Digging Up Dinosaurs: 5 Trends That Will Be Bigger Than T. Rex
Feathered dino
December 31st, 2015
This year, paleontologists made headlines with news of incredible dinosaur findings the world over, and they expect 2016 will hold just as many surprises, scientists told Live Science.
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4 New 'Flatworm' Species: No Brains, No Eyes, No Problem
February 4th, 2016
Four new species of deep-sea flatwormlike animals that resemble deflated whoopee cushions and lack complex organs have solved a complicated puzzle about their group's placement on the tree of life, scientists found.
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122-Foot Titanosaur: Staggeringly Big Dino Barely Fits into Museum
titanosaur fossils
January 14th, 2016
An incredibly long-necked dinosaur, with leg bones the size of couches, is so massive that it has invaded not one, but two rooms at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.
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Forget the Flashlight: New Ninja Shark Species Lights up the Sea
lanternshark teeth
December 29th, 2015
The ocean can be a deep and dark place, but the so-called "ninja" shark can light up its surroundings with a dimly glowing head, a new report says.
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Enormous Plesiosaur Once Swam Around Ancient Patagonia
The head and part of the neck are missing, but the reptile's long flippers, ribs and spine are in excellent condition
December 14th, 2015
A long-necked plesiosaur with enormous flippers once swam around the waters covering Patagonia about 65 million years ago, new research finds.
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'Behemoth' Daddy Longlegs Discovered in Oregon
cryptomaster leviathan and behemoth
January 25th, 2016
A new species of daddy longlegs has been unearthed lurking on the forest floor in the mountains of Oregon, and it’s a relative beast compared to its close cousins.
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Photos: Enormous Titanosaur Invades New York Museum
titanosaur fossils
January 14th, 2016
The cast of an enormous titanosaur skeleton will go on display at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City on Friday.
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The 10 Strangest Animal Discoveries of 2015
A colorful peacock spider
December 23rd, 2015
Every year, scientists wade into jungles, deserts and museum collections to examine animals and, if they're lucky, discover a new species.
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