20 New Sharks, Rays Discovered in Indonesia

20 New Sharks, Rays Discovered in Indonesia
<< Previous   2 of 4   Next >>
Distinguished by its trout-like colors and leopard-like spots, this Bali catshark is one of the 20 unusual new species discovered recently in Indonesia.

From 2001 to 2006, researchers from five Australian and Indonesian institutions sampled more than 130 shark and ray species on 22 trips across the roughly 17,000 islands of Indonesia (see Indonesia map).

The project was the first in-depth survey of the country's sharks and rays to be done in nearly 150 years.

The last such study was done by Dutch biologist Pieter Bleeker, who cataloged more than 1,100 fish species in the region between 1842 and 1860.

Much of the scientist's research was discounted at the time, however, because his colleagues refused to believe that such a diversity of sea life was possible.

In a long-delayed vindication of his work, biologists who took part in the new survey announced that they "agreed with Bleeker's findings."

See More Photos in the News
See Today's Top News Stories
Get Our Free email Newsletter: Focus on Photography
Photograph courtesy William White/CSIRO
 
NEWS FEEDS    After installing a news reader, click on this icon to download National Geographic News's XML/RSS feed. After installing a news reader, click on this icon to download National Geographic News's XML/RSS feed.

Get our news delivered directly to your desktop—free.
How to Use XML or RSS




 

50 Drives of a Lifetime

Listen to your favorite National Geographic news daily, anytime, anywhere from your mobile phone. No wires or syncing. Download Stitcher free today.