Researchers discover treasure trove of new tropical species in Indonesia

Just when we thought we’d colonized it all: Scientists have discovered a jungle in New Guinea’s Foja mountains that is home to hundreds of rare and dozens of previously unknown species of flora and fauna. Researchers were helicoptered into the Rhode Island-sized area and spent a month in a state of awe. Among their findings were a new species of honeyeater bird, a nearly extinct tree kangaroo, a rhododendron with blossoms the size of bread plates, and an aptly named bird of paradise that hadn’t been recorded since the 19th century. “It is as close to the Garden of Eden as you’re going to find on earth,” said chief scientist Bruce Beehler of Conservation International, who also noted that the animals in the tropical utopia were not afraid of humans. The group plans to return in July to prepare for logging crews. No, we kid!