Sunday, 18 April 2010

Nose-Dwelling Leech Discovered in the Amazon

Scientists have discovered a new species of nose-dwelling leech in the remoter parts of the Upper Amazon.  This new species was first seen in 2007 in Peru, when one of the leeches was removed from the nose of a young girl who had been bathing in the river.

The new species of leech has been named Tyrannobdella rex or 'tyrant leech king' and it enters the body orifices of both humans and animals and attaches itself to the mucous membranes by it's eight huge teeth. The leech's favourite orifice to inhabit seems to be the nose. The leech has some unusual characteristics, including one single jaw, the eight large teeth and extremely small genitalia. The scientists believe that the leech could live in the nose or mouth of an aquatic animal, and stay there feeding for months at a time.

Find out more about the new species of nose-dwelling leech

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