Number 10 – Michelin Man™ PlantTop 10 New Species of 2008
Name: Tecticornia bibenda
How it made the Top 10: This new species made the Top 10 because of its charismatic appearance; according to press releases, it looks like the Michelin Man™. It has been also the subject of media releases on the lack of support for taxonomic work in Western Australia, a biodiversity hotspot. There is a huge backlog of new plant species awaiting description, ironically generated by environmental impact surveys for mining companies. It is one of 298 new plant species described from Western Australia in 2007.
Reference: Shepherd, K.A., & S.J. Van Leeuwen. 2007. Tecticornia bibenda (Chenopodiaceae: Salicornioideae) a new C4 samphire from the Little Sandy Desert, Western Australia. Nuytsia 16: 383-391.
Type material: Holotype, Western Australian Herbarium, Perth.