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Man Shows Off Rare Pink Katydid Insect In Beautiful Video

The adaptability of nature and the fascinating way that living things can see their genes mutate essentially means that the world will never stop running out of ways to surprise us.

Indeed, it seems that nowadays, not a year goes by without researchers somehow discovering a new form of life. Whether that's because we simply got better at looking for them or they legitimately didn't exist until recently is often a difficult question to answer, but the important thing is that they're here now.

And as we'll see from the colorful creature in the full video, these new arrivals can be pretty good at making an entrance.

Last year, insect hunter Deri Saputa came across a very interesting specimen during his travels.

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His Instagram page and YouTube account are dedicated to all of the unusual insects he comes across, but this one definitely had a reason to stand out.

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Indeed, it's hard not to stand out when your whole body is bright pink.

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And as we can see, that's definitely the case for the pink katydid he uncovered.

Although he didn't specify where exactly he found this bug, he had a lot to say about it.

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For one thing, he said that only one in about 500 katydids turns out pink.

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And when the description of his video is translated from Indonesian, we see that he also said, "This is an excellent opportunity to find unicorns in the wild. Of course, this pink isn’t too common for the animal kingdom, This is the result of a condition called erythrism, similar to the recessive gene that afflicts albino animals."

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However, his explanation for this phenomenon seems to conflict with that of George Beccaloni from London's Natural History Museum.

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According to National Geographic, a photo taken in northern Borneo back in 2013 led him and fellow scientist Sigfrid Ingrisch to conclude that pink katydids are actually the female members of two all-new species of the bug.

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One of the species identified, Eulophophyllum kirki, had pronounced "veins" in its leafy exterior that they felt warranted a new classification.

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However, a description of a 1993 expedition to Borneo and some photos from the internet led to classify an additional katydid species with pink females as E. lobulatum.

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However, the two scientists involved have run into some controversy among their peers for deciding that pink katydids belonged to different species entirely.

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As National Geographic reported, that mostly had to do with the fact that they did this solely after seeing pictures of the insects.

As David Rentz of the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation told the magazine, "You can identify a species based on a photo, but you cannot describe and name a species based on this. You have to have the item in hand."

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If Saputa is right, then pink katydids just happened to turn out that way due to a kind of albinism that makes them vulnerable to predators.

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If Beccaloni and Ingrisch are right, then their pink hue arises from the idea that a female katydid can simply stay hidden and eat young, red leaves.

As Beccaloni said, "It’s possible the males evolved green camouflage so they can hide in more places while they are roaming around looking for females."

Color aside, the bugs are leaf-like in appearance, after all.

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But regardless of which theory is correct, what is certainly true is that the insect's habitats are being seriously threatened by logging to make palm oil and timber.

So whether this katydid is pink because of a genetic mutation or because of its species, it's definitely important to appreciate that we could lose it if such activities continue unfettered.

h/t: National Geographic

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