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New paper in Zootaxa!

In a recent paper published in Zootaxa, Matteo Vecchi together with Edoardo Massa provided the first tardigrade record from the state of Indiana (USA). Along with these first records, they described a new species: Macrobiotus kathyae.

Graphical abstract: Bartłomiej Surmacz et al. 2024. "The study examined the microbiota of cultured tardigrades and found that most microbial profiles are dominated by bacteria originating from food, medium, or reagents. Re-analysing previous studies revealed similar contamination issues. This highlights and emphasises the challenges faced in researching the microbiota of microinvertebrates."

Photo: Edoardo Massa. Egg of Macrobiotus kathyae under Light Microscope.


The newly described species have unique egg ornamentation consisting of processes ending in spikes, allowing its differentiation from all other Macrobiotus species. Also, two more rare species were identified: Macrobiotus basiatus, previously found only once, and Barbaria danieli, previously found only two times in the southern part of the USA, extending considerably its range northward.

This contribution showed that we have still a long way before having a good understanding of the true tardigrade biodiversity and distribution.

You can check out the full paper here.


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