Related Topics: Environment & Biodiversity, Zoological Survey of India
Why in News
Scientists of the Zoological Survey of India have discovered seven species of water treaders, semi-aquatic insects that can walk or run on the surface of water.
News in Detail
- The newly described species belong to the genus Mesovelia whose size ranges from 1.5 mm to 4.5 mm.
- They are equipped with hydrophobic setae (bristles) on their legs.
- The combination of hydrophobic setae and water surface tension prevents them from sinking.
- The insects are pale green with silver-white wings with black veins on the basal half which make them stand out over the green mat of aquatic weeds.
- There are 12 species of genus Mesovelia found in the country.
How it is different from water striders?
- Other than the size, there are morphological features that make these pond-weed insects different from water striders.
- The claws of Mesovelia are placed apically (tip or extreme end of legs), whereas in water striders, they arise from the pre-apex (just before the tip) of legs.
New species discovered
- Mesovelia andamana (Andaman Islands)
- bispinosa and M. Isiasi (Meghalaya)
- occulta and M. Tenuia (Tamil Nadu)
- brevia and M. Dilatata (Meghalaya and Tamil Nadu)
[Source: The Hindu]