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Misamis finds two new kinds of weevils

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Researchers from Mindanao found two new weevil species in the forests of the provinces of Misamis Occidental and Misamis Oriental.

The species are from the Metapocyrtus (Dolichocephalocyrtus) baulorum and Metapocyrtus (Dolichocephalocyrtus) malindangensis, according to research published in this month’s Acta Biologica Universitatis Daugavpiliensis, Volume 22, No. 1.

According to the journal, the species are “novum,” or brand-new to science.

In the municipality of Don Victoriano Chongbian in Misamis Occidental and in Gingoog City in Misamis Oriental, the weevils were found, according to Rodrin Rivera, one of the researchers who identified the species. They were also detected in the forests of Mount Malindang.

In Tangub City, Misamis Occidental, Rivera teaches in the School of Teacher Education at the Northeastern Mindanao State College of Science and Technology.

In regards to the capture, he said, “It took us five months to actually start the sample since we had to first abide by the DENR’s (Department of Environment and Natural Resources), LGU’s (local government units), and NCIP’s (National Commission on Indigenous Peoples) consent and other licenses.”

They needed an additional two months to complete the data processing, which included identification, characterization, and validation.

Citing earlier research showing the mountain range is one of the least studied protected places in the Philippines, Rivera claimed that Malindang is home to new species as well as indigenous ones.

The type of environment that Mt. Malindang has, which are heavily forested, gave him the idea that there might be new weevil species there.

Analyn Anzano Cabras, Efrhain Loidge Pajota, and Milton Norman Medina worked with Rivera as co-researchers.

At the University of Mindanao in Davao City, Patoja teaches at the College of Arts and Science, while Cabras is a member of the Coleoptera Research Center.

At Davao Oriental State University in Mati City, Davao Oriental, Medina is a professor at the Institute of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

The subgenus Dolichocephalocyrtus is represented in the Philippines by 25 taxa, 24 species, and 1 subspecies, according to the research team’s journal.

The descriptions of six of the species came from Luzon, five from Visayas, twelve from Mindanao, including one subspecies, and one from an unidentified location that is just referred to as the “Philippines”.

2020 saw the discovery by the Cabras-led team of further weevil species, which they named Metapocyrtus (Dolichocephalocyrtus) zamboanganus.

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