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Science

New Species Found in Central Park 30

Posted by michael
from the muggerus-americanus-still-found-often dept.
ScurvySeaDog writes "The centipede is the first new species in more than a century to be discovered in Central Park." Just goes to show what's right before your eyes...
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New Species Found in Central Park

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  • by GCP (122438) on Wednesday July 24, 2002 @10:29PM (#3948974)
    Everytime I go to Central Park I encounter a new species or two. They appear humanoid, but I'm sure I don't know what planet they're from.

    • [Puts on his sunglasses]

      Excuse me, GCP, I'm with the local health clinic and we're going around town and giving people free eye exams today. Would you look right here for just a second.....

      ->[BRIGHT FLASH]<-

  • Isolated. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by undeg chwech (589211) on Wednesday July 24, 2002 @10:40PM (#3949020) Homepage
    Central park is pretty isolated from the outside world - for a centipede.

    Could this new species perhaps evolved there from a known centipede species?

    A new species of mosquito [abdn.ac.uk] evolved in the London underground, for example.
    • Re:Isolated. (Score:1, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward
      If it evolved there from another species, where are the intermediates? If this is much better than the originals, why are the originals still present? If an intermediate was better than the original, the original should be gone by evolutionary theory (survival of the fittest, not survival of the fitter).

      It wasn't evolution, it was just hiding from nosy biologists. Sort of like the Coelacanth [dinofish.com], which is an index fossil for rock layers 70,000,000 to 400,000,000 years old. Brings up questions, doesn't it.
      • If an intermediate was better than the original, the original should be gone by evolutionary theory.

        That isn't true. The original species will continue to exist so long as its members produce enough offspring to replace the individuals of that species that die.

        If the descendent species occupy the same ecological niche (eat the same food, use the same places for shelter and mating, etc) then it is possible that one or the other species will die out because the ecosystem can't support them both, but it isn't an inevitable outcome when new species emerge

        To succeed, a species or individual doesn't need to be the "fittest", it just needs to be good enough.

      • Re:Isolated. (Score:4, Informative)

        by Alsee (515537) on Friday July 26, 2002 @12:48PM (#3959203) Homepage
        why are the originals still present?

        In many cases the force driving the split is that it is evoloving to fit into a different ecological niche. Both species can then co-exist because they aren't in competition. They are living in separate places and/or eating differnt things.

        -
  • what were the other species discovered in Central Park?
  • Centipede? (Score:4, Funny)

    by DJayC (595440) on Thursday July 25, 2002 @12:11AM (#3949382)
    If it's only got 82-legs, why is it a centipede? I'm sure some bum just spent his day cutting off the lower 1/4 of all the centipedes in sight.. new species!
  • If they want to find some new species to name, they should check out my bedroom. With all the crap that's been laying around for who knows how long I'm sure a few things have mutated into new organisms by now.

  • Wrong Topic (Score:4, Funny)

    by EccentricAnomaly (451326) on Thursday July 25, 2002 @12:27PM (#3951901) Homepage
    This story should have been submitted as a "Bug" :)
  • by sedawkgrep (142682) on Thursday July 25, 2002 @01:47PM (#3952437)
    Article says something like "adult grows to about 0.4 inches in length, about half that of a normal centipede".

    WTF?! Is that all the bigger they get in the rest of the world? My best friend caught one in his bedroom (he lives in a very desert/arid area of Colorado) that was about 5 inches long. HUGE. I've seen several in the 3-4 inch range. Anyhow he stuck it in a big tea-jar and proceeded to feed it all sorts of other insects. Watching that thing eat was possibly the most horrific thing I've ever seen in real life. Those things are truly frightening creatures. Not to mention the barbed legs - they created a nice screeching sound as it tried to climb the side of the jar.

    YUCK.

    sedawkgrep
    • In reply to your sig, that's not a salami, but a 5 inch centipede in your pants. Watch out!
    • BotFly (Score:3, Interesting)

      by johnstewart (191901)
      You think that's gross, check this out:

      http://mycostaricatrip.sitemanager.ims.net/learn /i ndex.php?category_id=163

      Check out the "Mark's Human Botfly Infestation Story" link. A horrifying prospect to have a couple of these little guys burrowing in your scrotum. No lie.
      • Whoa, that's screwed up. Gotta be the slashcode; I pasted the URL in properly. Remove the space in the index.php.

        Or try this link:

        http://mycostaricatrip.sitemanager.ims.net/

        And click the botfly link towards the bottom right.

        Scary stuff.
    • If it's that large, it's probably a millipede.

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