New Checklist of Guiana Shield Highlights Cockroach Diversity in the Americas

Entomology Today

Cockroaches that mimic beetles, semi-aquatic cockroaches, and cockroaches that live only in forest canopies …

These are only a few of the 234 cockroach species listed as the known fauna of the Guiana Shield in a new paper published in the journal ZooKeys.

It turns out that the Guiana Shield — a large region in northeast South America which spans the countries of Guyana, Suriname, French Guiana, and parts of Colombia, Venezuela, and Brazil — may be one of the world’s hotspots of biodiversity for cockroaches. According to the authors of the paper, only Rio De Janiero is known to be a region of higher diversity in the Americas.

“Sampling is still severely lacking,” the authors wrote. “What little sampling has been done in the Guianas was mostly completed before 1960.”

As with most insects, what we don’t know about these animals is far greater than what we do…

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