World News – UA – Two new species of gliders discovered by DNA tests


Two new species of gliders were discovered after Australian scientists decided to carry out DNA tests on the larger glider

It has long been suspected that the largest glider, a marsupial the size of an opossum that can glide up to 100m through forests, is not a single species

Scientists believed its wide range spanning from Queensland to Victoria and differences in height and physiology hinted at hidden diversity

Denise McGregor, a doctoral student at James Cook University, was studying the reach of gliders when she realized the genetic differences were striking

JCU then partnered with Australian National University, University of Canberra, and CSIRO to confirm that the largest gliders are three different species

« For some time there has been speculation that there was more than one species of larger glider but now we have DNA proof, » said Ms McGregor

« It’s not every day that new mammals are confirmed, let alone two new mammals, » said Professor Krockenberger

Larger gliders are classified as vulnerable, and ANU’s Dr Kara Youngentob says species identification is crucial for conservation efforts

« As a result, there has been an increasing emphasis on understanding the genetic diversity and structure of species to protect resilience in the face of climate change, » said Dr Youngentob

« The division of the larger glider into several species reduces the previous widespread distribution of the original species, further increasing conservation concerns for this animal and highlighting the lack of information on other more glider species. large « 

She said there had also been an alarming decline in populations of large gliders in the Blue Mountains of New South Wales and the Central Highlands of Victoria

Dr Youngentob hopes that confirmation of three species will be considered by governments making decisions and laws on the state of conservation

Species, Large glider, Marsupials, Australia, Kara Youngentob

News from the world – UA – Two new species of gliders discovered by DNA tests
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Two new species of gliders discovered by DNA tests


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