Facebook Twitter 新浪微博 google plus Instagram YouTube Wednesday, Dec. 23, 2015

Top 10 new species of 2015: Cartwheeling spiders, 'chicken from hell' and a giant stick insect celebrated in the year's first official list (17)

By RICHARD GRAY (Mail Online)    14:30, December 23, 2015

The Christmas decoration

Name: Tillandsia religiosa

Location: Morelos, Mexico

What is it: A bromeliad plant

Why it made the list: This plant has formed part of the traditional Christmas decorations in villages in Mexico for some time. Despite being well known by locals, this red and green plant turns out to be a new species previously unknown to science.

The plant is used to make elaborate altar scenes or 'nacimientos' depicting the birth of Christ in Sierra de Tepoztlán, Tlayacapan, San José de los Laureles, and Tepoztlán.

The bromeliad plant has rose-colored spikes and flat green leaves, can be found growing up to 5 feet tall (1.5m) in rocky habitat in northern regions of Morelos, Mexico.

Stemless, solitary plants are found on cliffs and vertical walls in deciduous, coniferous, oak and cloud forests at altitudes between 6,000 and 7,000 feet (1,800 to 2,100 m) elevation, where they flower from December to March.

The bromeliad is an example of a species long known to local inhabitants but only recently discovered by science.

This green spikey plant with pink to red spikes has formed part of traditional village Christmas decorations for generations, but it turned out to be a completely new species to science, proving that sometimes even the familiar can lead to new discoveries in some regions


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(Editor:Yuan Can,Bianji)

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