By NAOMI WASE
A new species of seashell has been discovered and named after a scientist and associate professor at the University of Papua New Guinea (UPNG) Dr Ralph Mana.
The 3cm long deep-water seashell was named recently Scabrotrophon mania, after Mana, who discovered the shell six years ago.
He will be travelling to Paris next week to receive papers for his work and discovery.
“I didn’t know that they were going to name the shell after me,I was surprised,” Mana told The National.
He said it was a big honour for him and he was humbled that his work was recognised.
“They don’t just name any species after anybody, they usually name new species after the person who discovered it or after some very special person,” Mana said.
He said since UPNG had collaborated with National Museum of Natural History in Paris in 2009, three deep-sea marine expeditions had taken place in PNG.
Mana took part in all three expeditions which were done basically to find out what lived under 200 to 1500 metres deep in PNG waters.
“Many new species of organisms were discovered during the expeditions,” Mana said.
Scabrotrophon manai was first found in Woodlark Island in Milne Bay in 2010 and then later in other parts of the country.
He said there were a lot of things in the forest and sea that people did not known about.
“We are doing the expeditions for scientific knowledge only and not any bio prospecting work or discovering molecules for human purposes,” Mana said.
He will be travelling to Paris next week to formally receive the papers. “I will also be presenting my paper (about the expeditions) in Paris and I will try to convince potential donors that we should have one more expedition in the southern part of the PNG waters,” Mana said.
By NAOMI WASE