Researchers discover new giant cockroach species in Indonesia’s deep sea

Researchers discover new giant cockroach species in Indonesia’s deep sea
A giant Bathynomus species was discovered at 957-1,259 meters below sea level in Indonesia's Sunda Strait and the southern sea of Java island. (The Indonesian Institute of Sciences-LIPI)

Bogor, West Java (Indonesia Window) – Researchers of the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) has succeeded in describing a new species of giant crustacean found in the Sunda Strait and the southern sea of ​​the island of Java.

The giant Bathynomus species was discovered at 957-1,259 meters below sea level, LIPI’s said.

“The discovery of this new species is a major achievement of taxonomists. Moreover, this species is large and was found in a spectacular ecosystem,” Acting Head of LIPI’s Zoology Department Cahyo Rahmadi said.

The giant Bathynomus was collected from LIPI’s South Java Deep Sea Biodiversity Expedition (SJADES) with the National University of Singapore in 2018 under research coordinators Dwi Listyo Rahayu and Peter Ng.

Cahyo explained, the discovery of this new species of Bathynomus shows Indonesia’s great biodiversity potentials that have not been revealed.

“The future of the disclosure of Indonesia’s biodiversity is catching up with the rate of its extinction and possibly taxonomists as the frontline,” he added.

The term giant as the name of the Bathynomus refers to the body size of this species which can reach more than 15 centimeters in adulthood.

“Its size is indeed very large and becomes the second largest one of the genus Bathynomus,” LIPI’s biology researcher Conni Margaretha Sidabalok noted.

She explained, several previous studies had found five species of Bathynomus in the category of super giant in the Indian Ocean and Pacific.

“The discovery of the first Bathynomus from the deep sea of ​​Indonesia is very important for taxonomic research on marine crustaceans in the country,” she said.

The discovery of a new type of giant Bathynomus was published in the journal ZooKeys on July 8, 2020.

Reporting by Indonesia Window

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