February 25, 2011

New Birds Species Discovered in Madagascar

The new species – recently named Mentocrex beankaensis by the scientist who discovered it – is a forest dwelling rail which was distinguished from other similar birds by its plumage, size and DNA. The bird is found in the western Madagascan rainforests of which only 3% of its original forest cover is left, after 2,500 years of human impact.


The Beanka Forest, where the rail bird was discovered, is still in reasonably good condition, protected by its remote location on an exposed and jagged limestone outcrop. The forest here has been managed since 2007 along with parallel programmes for social and economic development of nearby buffer communities.

“Madagascar, like the Amazon, continues to provide us with undiscovered plant and animal species,” commented Matthew Owen of Cool Earth. “And that’s just one of the reasons why it’s so important to conserve what we can of the world’s remaining tropical rainforest.”


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