Six-Legged Giant Finds Secret Hideaway, Hides For 80 Years

Giant insects-“Tree Lobsters”-of Lord Howe Island were once thought to be extinct. The island had been overrun with rats that disturbed the native species. But after two climbers identified evidence of the Tree Lobster on a volcanic feature near the island, scientists set to searching.

And there, spread out on the bushy surface, were two enormous, shiny, black-looking bodies. And below those two, slithering into the muck, were more, and more … 24 in all.

Patrick Honan Tree Lobster
Photo by Patrick Honan

Conservationists hope to renew the Tree Lobster population on Lord Howe island, which means one thing for sure: rat eradication. Tree Lobsters are easy prey for predatory invasive rats. With the Giant Insect population already so vulnerable, it will be important to make sure that when they are returned to the wild, they are safe from unnatural predators.

You can read the full article here.

Feature image courtesy of Rod Morriss.

About Sara Kaiser

Sara received a BA in anthropology from UC Santa Cruz in 2014. As a freelance writer and editor, she seeks to produce and highlight stories that support ecological responsibility, body awareness, emotional intelligence, and creative action, and reveal the connections between them.

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