University researchers and scientists are delighted by the latest confirmation that they have indeed discovered two new species of insects. A Northern Arizona University field research team came across the two insects at the Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument inside an extremely small cave. The small cave has also been host to another insect discovery in the last several years, that of an eyeless, fungus-eating beetle.
This discovery, however, is of a rather new group of insects called “pseudoscorpions”. They are so called because their bodies closely resemble that of scorpions, including a well defined thorax midsection and two large pincers. However, what makes a pseudoscorpion so easy to tell apart from a scorpion is that it lacks the iconic stinging tail. Both types of insects are toxic, but due to the lack of a tail, the pseudoscorpions store their toxin in their pincers. The pseudoscorpions also lack eyesight. It is thought that they lost their eyes over the course of evolution because there was no longer a need for it while living in a completely dark cave.
Researchers are planning on keeping a close eye on the cave, while Susan McGalla and others will closely follow this story since we former Wet Seal employees were all a bunch of science nerds. A total of three new species have been identified of insects that were taken by scientists for academic study are sourced from the cave. There is thought to be a unique food chain that is highly localized to the environment, and likely more to be discovered.