Biologists in New Zealand find rare species of sunfish

Biologists in New Zealand find rare species of sunfish

A team of marine biologists have discovered a rare species of sunfish that managed to evade discovery for as many as three centuries by hiding in a very messy history of sunfish taxonomy.

The marine biologists have named the new species specimen, a two-ton creature, Hoodwinker sunfish (Mola tecta) due to its elusiveness.

Marianne Nyegaard of Murdoch University said, “The new species managed to evade discovery for nearly three centuries by 'hiding' in a messy history of sunfish taxonomy, partially because they are so difficult to preserve and study, even for natural history museums.”

In Latin, Mola tecta (the Hoodwinker Sunfish) means disguised or hidden.

Nyegaard added that it was during her team’s research into unknown species of sunfish that she ultimately confirmed the existence of the Hoodwinker or Mola tecta.

The discovery of the new species of sunfish was reported and detailed in the most recent edition of the Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society.

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