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Child of Bast

New Velvet Worm Found in Vietnam

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Small bugs of the rain forest have many things to worry about, assuming they are capable of anxiety. But surely some of their more feared predators are velvet worms, a group of ancient animals that spit an immobilizing, glue-like material onto prey before injecting them with saliva and chomping down.

It turns out the velvet worm family is more diverse than thought: A new species has been found in the jungles of Vietnam. Unlike related velvet worms, this species has uniquely shaped hairs covering its body. It reaches a length of 2.5 inches (6 centimeters), said Ivo de Sena Oliveira, a researcher at the University of Leipzig, Germany, who along with colleagues describes the species in Zoologischer Anzeiger (A Journal of Comparative Zoology).

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