Photograph courtesy Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute
National Geographic News
Published December 9, 2009
Strange beasts—including a giant rat, a lungless worm, and a vegetarian spider—dominated National Geographic News's most popular new-species coverage of 2009.
Look on the bright side—this luminous new jellyfish species caught off Australia doesn't sting, a March study found.
Five new species of the tiny pygmy seahorse—all less than in inch tall—have been found in a flurry of recent discoveries, published in February.
We got spooked by a bloblike fish from the deep, a carnivorous sea squirt, and more freaky finds in our Halloween wrap-up.
In October we met the newest odd couple of the animal kingdom: the giant female and tiny male of the largest web-spinning spider known to science.
A "handsome" three-foot rodent is among the 40 potentially new species found on Mount Bosavi in central Papua New Guinea, one of the least explored places on Earth, a September study revealed.
As agile as its panther namesake in The Jungle Book, a tropical jumping spider Bagheera kiplingi is the only known plant-eater among 40,000 known spider species, an October study found.
Flying for years under the scientific radar, the new ghostshark species is among the world's oldest and—and oddest—fish, scientists said in September.
A new species of caecilian can survive on land with no nostrils, lungs, or legs, according to researchers who described the bizarre wormlike amphibian in November.
A tiny fish with fang-like protrusions has been revealed as a new species native to Myanmar (Burma), researchers announced in March.
A rare quail from the Philippines was photographed for the first time before being sold at a poultry market, experts said in February.
MORE MOST-VIEWED OF 2009
• Top Ten Discoveries of 2009: Nat Geo News's Most Viewed
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• Top Ten Space Finds of 2009: Nat Geo News's Most Viewed
• Top Ten Archaeology Finds: Most Viewed of 2009
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