Batillipes kalami

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Recently, researchers at the Cochin University of Science and Technology (Cusat) have identified a new species of marine tardigrade which they have named after the late former President and scientist A.P.J. Abdul Kalam.

About Batillipes kalami:

  • This newly discovered species from Mandapam in south-east Tamil Nadu belongs to the genus Batillipes.
  • It is the second marine tardigrade to be discovered from Indian waters and the first one from the east coast.
  • It is also the first taxonomically described species belonging to the genus Batillipes from India.
  • It is the 37th species of the genus Batillipes.
  • Features
    • Size-wise it averages 170 micrometres (0.17 mm) in length and around 50 micrometres (0.05 mm) in width.
    • It has a trapezoid-shaped head with sharp-tipped filament-like appendages (cirri) extending from it.
    • All four pairs of legs possess sensory spines of varying length.
    • The females are slightly bigger compared to the males.


Key points about Tardigrades

  • Tardigrades are extremely tiny animals whose size is measured in micrometres.
  • Their microscopic size, however, belies their toughness.
  • They are known for their extraordinary  tardigrade and survival instincts.
  • Studied using microscopes, these water-dwelling animals are also known as ‘water bears.’


Q1) What is Taxonomy?

Taxonomy is the science of classifying and categorizing organisms, objects, or concepts based on shared characteristics and relationships. It is used to organize and understand the diversity of life on Earth and to create a systematic framework for naming and classifying living organisms.

Source: New marine tardigrade species named after former President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam