The Prethopalpus attenboroughi, as it will now be known, was discovered on Horn Island in the Torres Strait off Queensland.

Despite its rather long-winded new name it is just one millimetre long. It was discovered by Dr Barbara Baehr from the Queensland Museum and Professor Mark Harvey from the Western Australia Museum.

Alec Coles, CEO of the WA Museum, said Sir David was chosen for the honour because of his love of nature and his ability to make science understood by millions over six decades.

He added: 'Prethopalpus is commonly known as a Goblin Spider, making this species Attenborough's Goblin Spider.

'It is incredible that in the 21st century our scientists are still documenting and describing so many new species.'