Researcher confuses new beetle species with bird poop!

Brisbane, Australia - A previously unknown species of beetle was almost mistaken for bird poop by a researcher in Australia before he and his colleagues realized the truth!

A previously unknown species of beetle was almost mistaken for bird poop by a researcher in Australia before he and his colleagues realized the truth!
A previously unknown species of beetle was almost mistaken for bird poop by a researcher in Australia before he and his colleagues realized the truth!  © James Tweed

On Thursday, the University of Queensland announced that a fluffy new species of longhorn beetle was discovered in a national park.

Funnily enough, PhD candidate James Tweed initially mistook the hairy insect for bird droppings.

Looks like nature's camouflage was working its magic – luckily, Tweed decided to take a closer look!

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"To my amazement, I saw the most extraordinary and fluffiest longhorn beetle I had ever seen," he said.

The beetle, which is 9.7 millimeters in size, was confirmed as a brand-new species by the Australian National Insect Collection (ANIC).

"We chose the name Excastra for the genus, which is Latin for 'from the camp,' and for the species name, we decided on albopilosa which translates to 'white and hairy,'" Tweed explained.

"We don’t yet know what these hairs are for, but our primary theory is that they make the insect look like it’s been killed by an insect-killing fungus," the researcher added.

Cover photo: James Tweed

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