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Researchers discover new tiny organism, name it for Wyeths


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UNITY, Maine (AP) — A team of researchers has discovered a new species of a microscopic organism known for its ability to survive extreme conditions — and named it for the Wyeth family of artists.

The Portland Press Herald reports (http://bit.ly/1Wv81JF ) researchers from Unity College found the eight-legged tardigrade on barnacles collected from Maine's Allen Island, which is owned by the Wyeth family.

Under a microscope, the invertebrate looks like a gummy bear. On average, it measures about 1 mm.

Dr. Emma Perry, a professor of marine biology at the college's Center for Biodiversity, named the species Echiniscoides Wyethi.

Perry documented her team's May 2014 discovery in a paper published in The Biological Society of Washington.

The Wyeth family includes three generations of artists — N.C., son Andrew and grandson Jamie.

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Information from: Portland Press Herald, http://www.pressherald.com

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