You’ll find plenty of interesting creatures if you march through a Florida swamp. There are of course alligators and crocodiles, as well as different species of snakes and other scary crawlies, but an animal in particular has removed researchers for a while. It is a species of giant salamander that can grow up to two meters long, and researchers currently documented its existence.
The salamander, under the scientific name Siren reticulata (meaning “reticulated siren”) Is a species of giant salamander who sports a unique leopard-like pattern of spots along the body. With no hind legs at all, the body is more like an eel than anything else, and its massive outer hills give the head a free look.
“Immediately jumping out of the reticulated siren that makes it so different from currently recognized species is its dark and reticulated pattern,” explained David Steen, co-author of the research. “It also seems as if they have a disproportionately smaller head compared with other sirens.”
The great salesperson had a somewhat mythical status in scientific circles prior to its official discovery and description. Salamander like this new species had been exposed and talked about in the long run but actually documenting new species takes a considerable amount of time.
This new paper finally adds all these whispers to rest and serves as a reminder that some still to be described species are still waiting to be found, hiding in common sight. In this case, the researchers took half a decade to find enough salamanders to accurately describe the species and confirm it as a new species.