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Klaus Esterluß | Ideas

Bizarre but valuable: Top 10-list of new species 2011 draws attention to biodiversity

Short time ago the International Institute for Species Exploration at Arizona State University anounced their picks for the top 10 new species described in 2011. It’s the fifth time in a row that attention-grabbing species have been nominated to open the world’s eyes for “the biodiversity crisis and the unsung species explorers and museums who continue a 250-year tradition of discovering and describing the millions of kinds of plants, animals and microbes with whom we share this planet,” as Quentin Wheeler, an entomologist who directs the International Institute for Species Exploration at ASU, said.
When you have a look at the gallery below you will have to admit that this year’s list is quite exquisit. It’s members come from Brazil, Myanmar, the Dutch Caribbean, South Africa, Papua New Guinea, Spain, Borneo, Nepal, China and Tanzania. You will find a  sneezing monkey there, a beautiful but venomous jellyfish, an underworld worm and a fungus named for a popular TV cartoon character.

The nominations had to be “species that capture our attention because they are unusual or because they have traits that are bizarre,” said Mary Liz Jameson, an associate professor at Wichita State University who chaired the international selection committee.  At the institute’s website you will also find a Google world map that pinpoints the location for each of the top 10 new species.

Date

May 31, 2012

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sumisom | Ideas

Double Platinum

It’s already called the world’s greenest museum…but it just got a little greener. The California Academy of Sciences in the U.S. opened in 2008 as a model of eco-friendly technology, and the U.S. Building Council gave it a platinum award. Now, the museum has won another – two times platinum, and as environmentally-conscious as ever.

The structure itself (right in the heart of Golden Gate Park) is an homage to sustainability and green living: it has a hilly, plant-covered living roof, insulation made of recycled denim, an entire canopy of solar panels and other green technology. And there’s a lot to see inside, too, like an aquarium, a planetarium and a natural history museum. National Public Radio in the U.S. did a report on the museum when it first opened, and they shared some amazing pictures here. Check them out!

Date

September 28, 2011

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