Scientists have rediscovered a bizarre insect in Kenya, collecting the first Terrible Hairy Fly specimen since 1948.
Since then, at least half a dozen expeditions have visited its only known habitat - a rock cleft in an area east of Nairobi - in search of the fly.
Two insect specialists recently spotted the 1cm-long insect, known as Mormotomyia hirsuta, living on the 20m-high rock.
They point out that it looks more like a spider with hairy legs.
The fly was found by Dr Robert Copeland and Dr Ashley Kirk-Spriggs during an expedition led by the International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE).
"The rediscovery of the species, which has been collected on only two occasions before, in 1933 and 1948, has caused excitement in insect museums world-wide," the team members said in a statement.
Unable to fly and partial to breeding in bat faeces, the fly is thought to live only in the dank, bat-filled cleft of the isolated rock in Kenya's Ukazi Hills.
It also has non-functional wings that resemble miniature belt-straps, and tiny eyes.
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Terrible Hairy Fly rediscovered in Kenya.
From BBC News: