`Stratiomys Brunettii’: Meet Kashmiri scientist trio who discovered rare fly that helps in nutrient cycling

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Srinagar: Three Kashmiri researchers have discovered a rare fly, which has an enormous role in nutrient cycling.

Named Stratiomys Brunettii, the fly was discovered by Suhaib Firdous Yatoo, Amir Maqbool, and Aijaz Ahmad Wachkoo. The trio was able to spot the fly in Aharbal, Ladi Angan, and Gulmarg. Their discovery has been published in the European Journal of Taxonomy

 Suhaib, one of the researchers, said that these flies were collected during one of their expeditions in 2021.

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 “We often go on expeditions to discover new species of flies. The specimens of this new species of these vibrantly colored, yet rare flies, were collected from NW Himalayas (Aharbal, Ladi Angan, Gulmarg),” he said.

 Suhaib said the rare fly which is native to Europe is found at high altitudes, around running waters in Kashmir.

 “The climate of Kashmir resembles that of Europe. We traced this species in the northern side of Rafiabad as well. The presence of this species indicates that it has evolved from the northern region millions of years before,” he said.

 Suhaib said the fly has the potential to serve as a model organism in the world of science.

 “We need some more effort to learn about this species. This fly has an enormous role in nutrient cycling,” he said.

  The researchers believe that the newly identified fly species plays a crucial role in the delicate balance of the Kashmir Valley’s ecosystem. Its role in pollination, decomposition, or other ecological processes is yet to be fully understood, but the researchers are optimistic about the potential impact of their findings.

 Suhaib expressed his excitement about the find, “This discovery is not only significant for Kashmir but also for the global scientific community. It highlights the need for continued exploration and conservation efforts in our local ecosystems,” he said.

 The trio has been extensively researching various species of flies in Kashmir.

Suhaib said that they are aiming to popularize the concept of citizen science work in Kashmir to research and document the species that are facing extinction.

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