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New Species of Monkey Discovered


Photo: Maurice Emetshu

Oh, hello humans! Meet Cercopithecus lomamiensis or the Lesula, the newest primate species discovered by science. The monkey has been known locally in the remote forests of the Democratic Republic of Congo all along, but until now, it has been unknown to the outside world:

In an age where so much of the earth's surface has been photographed, digitized, and placed on a searchable map on the web discoveries like this one by a group of American scientists this seem a throwback to another time.

"We never expected to find a new species there," says John Hart, the lead scientist of the project, "but the Lomami basin is a very large block that has had very little exploration by biologists." [...]

"Our Congolese field teams were on a routine stop in Opala. It is the closest settlement of any kind to the area of forest we were working in," says Hart.

The team came across a strange looking monkey tethered to a post. It was the pet of Georgette, the daughter of the local school director.

She adopted the young monkey when its mother was killed by a hunter in the forest. Her father said it was a Lesula, well-known to hunters in that part of the forest. The field team took pictures and showed them to Hart.

"Right away I saw that this was something different. It looked a bit like a monkey from much further east, but the coloring was so different and the range was so different," said Hart.

David McKenzie of CNN has the story: Link

By the way, The last discovery of a new monkey species was 28 years ago.


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I saw. Sorry if I wasn't clear, but I was more objecting to the headline than the content of the story. I think that Boing Boing's coverage was frankly more informative and accurate. I wouldn't say that an animal that's been in the process of being studied and identified for nearly five years is "new." In my opinion (so take with as many grains of salt as you like) this is akin to "Columbus Discovered New Continent." It's misleading and more than that not true.
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Yes, and from the opening paragraph of the post: "The monkey has been known locally in the remote forests of the Democratic Republic of Congo all along, but until now, it has been unknown to the outside world."
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