Climate Change Is Impacting The Gender Outcome Of Sea Turtles

A new study has unveiled a new deep sea creepy crawly, 25 times larger than the average woodlouse. It's so big that it's been likened to the Darth Vader of the sea.

The 10-inch (26cm) creature is said to be 2,500 per cent larger than the woodlouse (Oniscus asellus) found lurking in the garden. It was discovered below the ocean in the Gulf of Mexico and "is common in the tropical and temperate deep sea".

The report, posted in the Journal of Natural History, said the latest addition was initially thought to be a type of "Bathynomus giganteus", a species of aquatic crustacean. However, upon closer inspection, researchers found many unique features and have since called the new species "Bathynomus yucatanensis".

The name derives from the Yucatán Peninsula in Mexico, the closest landmass to where the colossal creature was found.

"Compared to B. giganteus, B. yucatanensis has more slender body proportions and is shorter in total length … and the pereopods [thoracic limbs] are more slender," the researchers shared.

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Ming-Chih Huang, Journal of Natural History

Scientists have highlighted the history of giant isopods being misidentified since their discovery over 100 years ago.

The latest find was collected in 2017 and has since been held at the Enoshima Aquarium in Japan. Initially, it was assumed B. giganteus, but this new research has suggested otherwise.

Giant Isopod: Gulf of Mexico

"Due to the different sequences of the two genes – COI and 16S rRNA – coupled with differences in morphology, we identified it as a new species," they said.

Despite their alien-like appearance, they are said to be completely harmless, scavenging any food that comes their way.

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