Home Nature A new species of arachnid is dedicated to singer Bob Marley

A new species of arachnid is dedicated to singer Bob Marley

Scientists describe in detail the 'Desis bobmarleyi', associated with the famous reggae song High Tide or Low Tide.

Bob Marley
Bob Marley

It was two in the morning of January 11, 2009. The tide of the coast of the State of the Sun in Queensland (Australia) retreated considerably and let glimpse for the first time a group of marine spiders unknown to date.

This peculiar staging quickly reminded scientists of the popular theme of the undisputed legend of reggae, Bob Marley, from 1973, entitled High Tide or Low Tide, translated as ‘High Tide or Low Tide‘.

The researchers described this as a new species of spider for science. Now, the team formed by doctors Barbara Baehr, Robert Raven and Danilo Harms, affiliated with the Museum of Queensland and the University of Hamburg, in Germany, have published this study revealing the details of the arachnid, and offer unpublished information about two of their relatives (previously known, but not studied) from Samoa and Western Australia.

The new species responds to the scientific name of Desis bobmarleyi and unlike the spiders with which people are popularly familiar, this intertidal species is truly marine.

But how was your survival possible?

These animals have adapted to underwater life by hiding in shells of barnacles, corals and seaweed during high tide. To breathe, they build silk air chambers. However, once the sea water recedes, they are hunting for small invertebrates that roam the surfaces of rocks, corals and nearby plants.

At high tide or at low tide, I’ll be by your side

The research has been based on the study of original female and male specimens collected from the discovery zone.

Both sexes are characterized by predominantly reddish and brown colors, while their legs are orange brown and are covered by a dense layer of long, thin and dark gray structures. The females appear to be of a larger size with the sample studied, which measures almost 9 millimeters, while the male was about 6 millimeters long.

The range of distribution of this species is still too abstract to determine an exact region. However, for the time being, it has been tracked from the intertidal zones of the Great Barrier Reef on the northeast coast of Queensland.

In addition to reporting on their research, scientists use their role to pay homage to a late 19th-century German naturalist: Amalie Dietrich, as well as the famous Jamaican singer and songwriter.

“The song High Tide or Low Tide is the perfect reference for this spider, because its staging and message, promote love and friendship through all the struggles of life, “explain the authors by the curious choice of a first name.

Both figures, although representative of very different fields, are seen by the authors as examples of human nature “adventurous and resistant at heart” in search of freedom and independence.


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