NICE TO MEET YOU: Cherax leckii is a new species of yabby discovered in the upper reaches of the Clarence River catchment.
NICE TO MEET YOU: Cherax leckii is a new species of yabby discovered in the upper reaches of the Clarence River catchment.

Yabby researcher honours assistant



JASON Coughran has named a new species of yabby, found in the Clarence catchment, after his friend and field assistant.

Mr Coughran said he named the species, Cherax leckii, after Shawn Leckie.

The yabby was one of several new species the Southern Cross University PhD candidate found during his exploratory field work from south of Grafton to the Queensland border.

"The research project was an enormous effort, made easier by the frequent help Shawn offered," Mr Coughran said.

"He was very keen to help out whenever he could, and he did so on many occasions including the collecting trips for this new species."

Cherax leckii is a small yabby found in one of 245 sites sampled through Mr Coughran's project.

The description was published in the latest issue of the Australia New Guinea Fishes Association's journal, Fishes of Sahul, and Mr Coughran will include it in his yabby field guide to be released in March.

Mr Coughran said he was surprised to find a cherax in a remote, highland locality.

"It really throws up some big questions about what surprises might still be out there. It's a huge country, with unexplored pockets."



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