New Species of Black Fly Discovered in Indonesia

Posted on April 21, 2016

Simulium kalimantanense black fly

A new species of black fly has been discovered in Indonesia. The previously unknown species was discovered on the island of Borneo. The scientists do not yet know whether it bites humans or other animals.

The fly was discovered by a team of researchers from the University of Malaya in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia while they were surveying aquatic stages of black flies in Indonesia. It has been named Simulium kalimantanense in honor of the Indonesian state of Kalimantan, where it was discovered.

Dr. Hiroyuki Takaoka, a co-author of the study, says in the announcement, "This is a new species, so its biting habits remain unknown. One species, Simulium asakoae, of the subgenus Gomphostilbia, to which this new species belongs, is known to be a vector of an unknown filariasis -- a parasitic disease caused by infection with roundworms -- and it probably parasitizes birds. So there is a possibility of this new species carrying some roundworms that can infect wild mammals or birds."

The new fly is the first known member of the Simulium (Gomphostilbia) banauense species-group found in Borneo. A research paper on the fly was published here in the Journal of Medical Entomology.

Photo: Hiroyuki Takaoka

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