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.
| || || 7. Largest Web-Spinning Spider Found|
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.
| || || 6. Giant Rat, Silky Cuscus Found|
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.
| || || 5. "Surreal" Vegetarian Spider Found—A First|
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.
| || || 2. New "Dracula" Fish Discovered|
A tiny fish with fang-like protrusions has been revealed as a new species native to Myanmar (Burma), researchers announced in March.
| || || 1. "Extinct" Bird Seen, Eaten?|
A rare quail from the Philippines was photographed for the first time before being sold at a poultry market, experts said in February.
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