The Bavarian State Collection of Zoology Munich
Mysterious life on earth
So far, only about 10% of all multicellular living organisms on Earth have been discovered. A large part of life is thus still unknown! Especially within the group of insects, large numbers of new species are constantly being discovered, all in all around 20,000 new species per year. Through genetic identification of species and by comparison with known DNA sequences, many new discoveries can be quickly and accurately identified. In this way, scientists at the Bavarian State Collection of Zoology Munich (ZSM) were able to identify more than 100 new weevil species from New Guinea within a fairly short period of time. Presently, the ZSM has genetically classified approximately 16,000 beetle species.
Link to the corresponding publication: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/1755-0998.12354
The Bavarian State Collection of Zoology Munich (ZSM)
Biodiversity in Madagscar
The study of Madagascar’s biodiversity, especially the examination of frogs, lizards, snakes and turtles, most of which are not found anywhere else in the world, constitutes one of the ZSM‘s main research focuses. The number of new discoveries, particularly within the group of amphibians, has risen enormously over the past 20 years. Unfortunately, biodiversity research also shows just how endangered many of these species are due to habitat destruction.
Link to a list of diverse publications concerning biodiversity in Madagascar
The Bavarian Botany and Mycology State Collection Munich
Discovering a new plant species on Facebook
For the first time, botanists discovered and described a new plant species only by looking at a photograph that had been posted on the social network service „Facebook“. An international team of botanists from Brazil, the United States and the Bavarian Botany and Mycology State Collection Munich (BSM) identified the plant with certainty as a new species by comparing it with already known sundew species from the BSM’s collections. Drosera magnifica, a microendemic sundew, turned out to be the largest sundew of the Americas known to date. In comparison with other known sundew species, this plant features distinctive characteristics, however, does also show several common traits.
Link to the corresponding publication: https://biotaxa.org/Phytotaxa/article/view/phytotaxa.220.3.4