So, a newly discovered parasite has been named after Barack Obama.
Thomas R. Platt a retired biology professor at Saint Mary’s College in Indiana, United States discovered a parasite and decided to name it after the President of United States himself.
The reason being that the parasite’s body reminded the professor of Obama, with Mr. Platt describing the parasite as “It’s long. It’s thin. And it’s cool as hell.”
This has not been the first time that Mr. Obama’s name has been given to a newly discovered parasite or creature. In total, Obama has almost 6 different creatures as his namesakes, namely being:
- Spider- Aptostichus barackobamai
- Lichen- Caloplaca obamae
- Fish -Etheostoma obama
- Bird -Nystalus obamai
- Extinct reptile- Obamadon gracilis
- Horsehair worm- Paragordius obamai
It sounds like the scientists have a lot of fun besides discovering things that will change the world. It is said that more than 20,000 species are identified in just one year.
So, in a way it makes sense that scientists would use the names of these important and significant people, and in their own way, honour them.
Learning of this, I got a bit curious and decided to go and find out which other celebrities or public personalities apart from Barack Obama share a name with newly discovered creature.
Here I present to you my findings:
Bob Marley- Gnathia Marleyi
Field marin biologist Paul Sikkel, named this small crustacean parasite that feeds on parasite, after Bob Marley, because like Marley this creature too was a “natural wonder”. Sikkel’s great admiration and awe for Bob Marley resulted in him naming the parasite after him.
P. J. Abdul Kalam- Fish- Kalam Horaglanis Abdulkalami
This species of blind catfish from Thissur was discovered by the Assistant Professor in Biology at an Ethiopian university, Mr. K.K. Subhash Babu.
He decided to name it after A.P.J. Abdul Kalam.
Freddie Mercury- Frog- Mercurana; Crustacean- Cirolana mercuryi; Damselfly- Heteragrion freddiemercuryi; Stonefly- Taeniopteryx mercuryi
Freddie Mercury seems to be popular name amongst scientists discovering new species. He shares his name with a variety of species, coming in total of 4 species.
Pearl Jam- Mayfly- Paramaka pearljam
Even Pearl Jam has a species of mayfly named after it.
Steve Irwin- Protist -Trypanosoma irwini; Snail – Crikey steveirwini;
Ahhh, how can we forget Steve Irwin, the crocodile man. I have myself spent evenings with my father watching his show.
Trypanosoma irwini, which was discovered in 2009 by Linda M. McInnes and her team, was given the title of ‘The Crocodile Hunter’ in honour of its namesake.
Image Credits: Google Images