Wallace's giant bee has been rediscovered in Indonesia
An international team of scientists and conservationists has announced the finding of what many consider to be the 'holy grail' of bee discoveries, Wallace's giant bee.
The bee (Megachile pluto) is the world's largest, with a wingspan more than six centimetres (2.5 inches). Despite its conspicuous size, the bee has been lost to science since 1981.
In January, a search team that set out to find and photograph Wallace's giant bee successfully rediscovered the species in the North Moluccas, an island group in Indonesia.
The find resurrects hope that more of the region's forests still harbour this very rare species.
The bee is named after Alfred Russel Wallace, the co-discoverer alongside Charles Darwin of the theory of evolution through natural selection. Wallace, a British entomologist, discovered the giant bee exploring the Indonesian island of Bacan.
He described the female bee, which is about the length a human thumb, as "a large black wasp-like insect, with immense jaws like a stag-beetle."