‘I’ll have the Mandela!’ Lobster species named after South African hero

The squat lobster was found to live 750 meters below the ocean’s surface and measures just seven millimeters from its eyes to its rear edge. (Photo courtesy: Natural History Museum)

A species of crustacean, discovered in 2011 off the coast of South Africa, has been identified and named in honor of Nelson Mandela.

The squat lobster now has the Latin name Munidopsis mandelai in honor of the leader who died in December.

The sea creature was found in a relatively unexplored area of the Southwest Indian Ocean Ridge by a PhD student based at the Natural History Museum in London, reported the Daily Mail.

The squat lobster was found to live 750 meters below the ocean’s surface and measures just seven millimeters from its eyes to its rear edge.

“We discovered the new species unexpectedly during a larger experiment investigating submerged wood and bones in the Southwest Indian Ocean seamount, an unexplored area,” said the PhD student, Diva Amon.

“The finding provides us with another example of how deep sea research continues to reveal the mysteries of underwater ecosystems,” she added.

It was sent to Dr. Paul Clark of London’s Natural History Museum and Dr. Enrique Macpherson, of Centro de Estudios Avanzados de Blanes in Spain, to be identified.

Clark said: “This species was collected in great depths in an isolated area just off of South Africa and identified in summer 2013, proving that deep sea research continues to produce new scientific discoveries.

“We thought it would be a fitting tribute to name this find in honor of Mr. Mandela, a remarkable man.”

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:42 - GMT 06:42
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