Lord Howe Island Stick Insect (Science and Nature - Animals of Australia)

Started by brontodocus, December 07, 2013, 10:49:25 PM

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Walk-around of the Science and Nature Animals of Australia (Large Replicas) Lord Howe Island Stick Insect or "Tree Lobster", Dryococelus australis (Montrouzier, 1885). The figure represents a female (males would have hind legs with much stronger femora). Length from head to end of abdomen is 90 mm so the scale is approx. between 1:1.3 to 1:1.4. Since it's quite close to life size but still outside of the species size range I would have preferred if it had been made in proper natural size. There are also some inaccuracies, the figure has one abdominal segment too many and only four tarsal segments on each foot instead of five.

The Lord Howe Stick Insect is an example of a Lazarus taxon, a species that has been considered extinct and then rediscovered alive. In this case, the species was considered extinct since about 1930 and in 2001 a tiny population of 24 individuals was found to have survived near a single Melaleuca howeana shrub on Ball's Pyramid off Lord Howe Island. A breeding program had been started and the Melbourne Zoo already reared over 9,000 individuals so the species will probably survive in captivity but the extremely small wild population is considered "Critically Endangered" by IUCN.

Here is a link to the figure at Science and Nature's website: http://www.scienceandnature.com.au/Animals-of-Australia_3/Large-Replicas/Lord-Howe-Island-Stick-Insect

Edit 2017-02-07: Fixed broken image urls.


I think that it is very curious to see a figure of this rare specie. I like that they have decided to do this figure  ^-^.
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