New Findings in the Animal Kingdom , April 2008

In this article, you will encounter the details regarding new finds in the animal kingdom, which involves the discovery of many species in Central Brazil (including a lizard with a unique feature). You will also learn which creature has taken the honors as possessing the largest eyes in the animal kingdom.

Creature With the Largest Eyes

Wellington, New Zealand reports that marine scientists have discovered the carcass of a rare colossal squid that possessing eyes that measure about 11 inches wide. This would make his peepers larger than the average dinner pate. The creature’s eyes are now known as the largest of any animal found on Earth. When taking a look at one of the eyes , scientists used a lens that was as large of an orange. It was completely intact, which would allow better analysis. The squid’s body was being slowly defrosted at the national museum in New Zealand.

Last year, the squid was caught off of the northern coast of Antarctica in a body of water called the Ross Sea. It has been preserved ever since. Reserchers are pretty happy with the find as it serves as the only intact eye of a colossal squid that has ever been uncovered. The squid is the largest specimen ever caught of the species called “Mesonychoteuthis hamiltoni” (also referred to as the colossal squid). It is a rare find that is full of mystery , a dweller of deep waters.

The squid measured 26 feet long and weighed in at around 1,000 pounds. Scientists believe that the species has the capacity to reach 46 feet in length. Squids can descend into depths of 6,500 feet and have gained a reputation as being a rather aggressive hunter. Another feature of the lens of the squid is that it can capture a great deal of light when it descends into darkness, which helps it hunt its prey.

New Species of Lizard Found

Central Brazil is abuzz with new animal discoveries, including a horned toad, dwarf woodpecker, and a lizard without any legs. Wildlife conservation groups took four week to canvas the Cerrado region , a wooded savannah that is becoming threatened by the expansion of farmers. Altogether, Conservation International reports that a total of 14 species were found, which consisted of eight unknown kinds of fish, three reptiles, one amphibian, one mammal, and a bird.

The legless lizard belongs to the Bachia genus, which takes on the form of a snake because it doesn’t have any legs and also possesses a pointed snout. These features allow the creature to travel across a terrain that is predominately sandy in its soil composition. The lizard measured 15 to 20 centimeters long, which rounds out to about 6 to 8 inches long. This species is not the only lizard with this legless feature. Around the rest of the world , some have been found that are related to the geckos in Australia or slow worms located in Europe.