Alycaeus costacrassa. Photo courtesy Universiti Malaysia Sabah.

The Institute for Tropical Biology and Conservation (ITBC) from Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) has discovered several new species of snails and plants.

Acting Director of ITBC Prof. Madya Dr Monica Suleiman said that they have discovered four new plant species in Sabah, and 11 new species of snails in Peninsular Malaysia.

Prof. Madya Dr Monica Suleiman said they have discovered four new plant species in Sabah.

“Two of the plants were found in an expedition led by me at Maliau Basin Conservation Area in Sabah,” she said.

The research expedition was in collaboration with researchers from Kobe University and University of Tokyo in Japan.

“The first plant is a type of saprofit, which is named Thismia Bryndonii.

“Meanwhile, the second plant we found is a new variety of an orchid named Didymoplexis Obreniformis var. Maliauensis, based on Maliau Basin where it was found,” Dr Monica said.

According to her, two more plant species were found during a research in Taman Bukit Tawau, also in Sabah.

“ITBC lecturers stationed at Faculty of Sustainable Agriculture, UMS in Sandakan, along with two associate research fellows in ITBC have found two new species of yam which are named Schismatoglottis saafiei and Schismatoglottis zainuddini,” she said.

Meanwhile, Dr Monica explained that the 11 new species of land snails found in Peninsular Malaysia discovered by ITBC researchers, Dr Liew Thor Seng and Foon Junn Kitt, a postgraduate student in ITBC.

“The new species of snails are named Alycaeus selangoriensis, Alycaeus costacrassa, Alycaeus ikanensis, Alycaeus alticola, Alycaeus charasensis, Alycaeus kurauensis, Alycaeus regalis, Alycaeus virgogravida, Alycaeus senyumensis, Alycaeus expansus and Alycaeus clementsi,” she added.

Dr Monica said that the recent discovery has successfully identified a total of 28 species of the Alycaeus snails in the peninsula.

Thismia bryndonii was among discovered by UMS.