Wildlife Wednesdays: New Specie Thriving in Whales' Mouths | weatherology°
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By: Meteorologist Megan Mulford
Updated: Mar 24th 2020

Wildlife Wednesdays: New Specie Thriving in Whales' Mouths

A new specie has just been discovered recently. Of all places, this specie is living and thriving inside Whale Sharks. The specie is a shrimp-like crustacean called Podocerus jinbe, and are known for their ability to thrive in the most extreme environments. Lead researcher Ko Tomikawa told the Agence-France-Presse that he was "surprised to find them living in the mouth of the world's largest fish and this is the first record of amphipods from whale sharks."

The new crustacean is around 3-5 cm long and has numerous "setae" on it, which are appendages that are useful to collect small particles in seawater, Tomikawa mentions. Since the specie is weak-developed, they will not attack or try to eat the whale sharks. Tomikawa further mentions that "finding this specie from the mouth of a whale shark sheds light on the amazing diversity of the habitat environment of this small marine creature." The whales' mouth provides a great habitat for the crustacean because seawater is replenished from the whale as it takes in water. It also provides the little creatures food and a safe place away from predators.

Podocerus jinbe Source: IFLSCIENCE
Whale Shark Source: Wikipedia