They named the bat inexpectata, meaning "unexpected" in Latin, the researchers wrote, because they weren't expecting to find it. "Some specimens of this previously undescribed species have been misidentified as L. mordax for more than a century," the authors wrote.
The researchers reviewed preserved bat specimens from museum collections, including the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History and Brazil's Museu Nacional.
Inexpectata bats had been previously classified along with a species called mordax bats, the authors wrote. But the inexpectata bat has different dental traits, head size and fur color, and is found in the caatinga dry forest region of northeastern Brazil.