Fri, Feb 21, 2014 - Page 5 News List

Entomologist finds new beetle species endemic to Taiwan

Staff writer, with CNA

A member of a newly identified species of longhorn beetle discovered by entomologist Chou Wen-yi in the Ligavon Forest Way in Beinan Township, Taitung County, is pictured in an undated photograph. The new species is called the Puyuma smallflower longhorn beetle.

Photo: CNA

An entomologist has announced the discovery a new species of longhorn beetle in the Ligavon Forest Way in Beinan Township (卑南), Taitung County.

Chou Wen-yi (周文一) has named the beetle the “Puyuma smallflower longhorn beetle” (普悠瑪細花天牛) because the area he found it in has traditionally belonged to the Puyuma Aboriginal community.

Chou said he has collected more than 800 species of longhorn beetles from various parts of the nation, including 100 varieties from Pingtung County and the Lalashan area on the border of Taoyuan County and New Taipei City (新北市), before settling down in Taitung several years ago.

Chou said he discovered the beetle two years ago and later confirmed it as a new species.

Flower longhorn beetles can usually be found visiting flowers, Chou said. However, while the new species often appears near flowering plants, it is not easy to find, and he had to visit mountainous parts of the area up to three times a week for a number of years before he was able to discover its habitat.

The beetle is endemic to Taiwan. It measures 1.6cm to 1.8cm in length, and has a black stripe running down the middle of its body and four black stripes on its wing cases, Chou said.

He said a report on his discovery has been published in the Japanese Journal of Systematic Entomology.

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