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New species of rare ants 'Protanilla' discovered in Goa

A new species of rare ants has been discovered in Goa's Netravali Wildlife Sanctuary. The new species has been named Vaibhav's Protanilla, after professor Vaibhav Chindarkar who is the head of the zoology department at the Government College of Arts, Science and Commerce, Sakhali.

India TV News Desk India TV News Desk
New Delhi Updated on: July 22, 2020 9:55 IST
A rare group of ants Protanilla is a genus of subterranean ants in the subfamily Leptanillinae
Image Source : ANTBASE.NET/MARTIN PFEIFFER

A rare group of ants Protanilla is a genus of subterranean ants in the subfamily Leptanillinae (Protanilla Rafflesi)

A new species of rare ants has been discovered in Goa's Netravali Wildlife Sanctuary. The new species has been named Vaibhav's Protanilla, after professor Vaibhav Chindarkar who is the head of the zoology department at the Government College of Arts, Science and Commerce, Sakhali. 

This new species Vaibhav's Protanilla is placed among the a rare group of ants called Protanilla, of which only 12 species were previously known. 

According to TOI report, researcher Pronoy Baidya said that the find was a tribute to Chindankar for having inspired the rise of several well-known wildlife enthusiasts from Goa. 

What is Protanilla?

A rare group of ants Protanilla is a genus of subterranean ants in the subfamily Leptanillinae. This rare ant group contains about twelve species. Protanilla usually occur in well-developed forests but can sometimes be found along forest edges. They nest in rotten wood fragments and in soil. However, it is still unclear if these ants are rare or woefully undersampled.

New ant species discovered in Thailand 

On Monday, the National Science Museum (NSM) announced that its researchers had discovered five new species of ants in Southeast Asia. Mr Weeyawat said that these five species had been known but never recorded in the Southeast Asian region until now.

Of the five new species of ants, two were found Thailand's Tak and Nakhon Si Thammarat, while the three others were found in the Malaysian island of Borneo. They were named after the trio who found them.

The two species found in Thailand have been named Syscia chaladthanyakiji Jaitrong, Wiwatwitaya et Yamane, 2020 and Syscia reticularis Jaitrong, Wiwatwitaya et Yamane, 2020.

The three species found in Malaysia are Myopias etsukoae Jaitrong, Wiwatwitaya et Yamane; Myopias striaticeps Jaitrong, Wiwatwitaya et Yamane; and Myopias suwannaphaki Jaitrong, Wiwatwitaya et Yamane, as reported by Bangkok post. 

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