New Type of Algae Discovered on Guam is Named After Local Reef Advocate

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Guam – A new species of single-celled organisms has been found on a Guam reef and it’s been named after Guam Coral Reef advocate Pete Peterson.

Peterson is the former owner of the Micronesian Diver’s Association and currently produces the television program “Diver Below.”  Peterson has been active in protecting reefs by establishing buoys so that dive boats can tie up to them rather than anchoring on reefs.

The new species which was found at the dive site Pete’s Reef is named in a paper on the diatom genus Climacones from Guam published by University of Guam Biology Professor Chris Lobban and his colleagues at the University of Texas.  Diatoms are single-celled organisms and one of the most common types of algae.

According to a news release from the University of Guam, the paper is the first in a series of articles on new species and new records resulting from The Western Pacific Diatoms Project, a collaboration between Lobban, Ed Theirot of the University of Texas and Ric Jordan at Yamagata University.  The project includes development of an online atlas of the diatoms in our region on the Texas Natural Science Center’s web site ProtistCentral.

Peterson’s species is one of two new species named in the paper.