2 New Cockroach Species Found in Southwestern Japan

Society

Tokyo, Nov. 25 (Jiji Press)--A team led by Japanese researchers has announced the discovery of two new cockroach species in southwestern Japan islands.

Belonging to the Eucorydia family, they cockroaches have a shining metallic coloration, said the team, including researchers from Ryuyo Insect Nature Observation Park in the city of Iwata in the central Japan prefecture of Shizuoka, and from Kagoshima University and Hosei University, both in Japan.

The park on Wednesday started displaying the new species--Eucorydia tokaraensis, found in Amami Oshima and other islands in Kagoshima Prefecture, southwestern Japan, and Eucorydia donanensis, native to the island of Yonaguni in Okinawa Prefecture, southernmost Japan. The male cockroaches of Eucorydia tokaraensis and Eucorydia donanensis are 12-15 millimeters and 12.5-14.5 millimeters in length, respectively.

The number of cockroach species found in Japan now totals 59. Only some 10 pct of them can be seen in towns, with others living in forests and caves.

Shizuma Yanagisawa, 25, an employee of the park, succeeded in uncovering the characteristics of the adult cockroaches after collecting young larvae of the two new species and raising them. "I'm happy about the discovery as progress in cockroach studies has been slow," he said. "I want to reveal the diversity of cockroaches, which play an important role in the decomposition of forest plants."

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press