Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Preseucoila imallshookupis

A couple of months ago I landed a new job at the university located in the town where I live. Not as a professor, mind you, but as a public relations officer.

Anyway, word apparently traveled quickly, as it soon became known at work that I'm an Elvis fan. Might have had something to do with me mentioning this during the job interview...

One morning I found a copy of a page from a scientific magazine, with a picture of Elvis from Jailhouse Rock on it, in my post-office box. A closer look revealed the caption Preseucoila imallshookupis followed by the following short text:

An additional gall wasp, named by entomologist Matthew Buffington in 2004. The genus name is named after Presley, while the species name imallshookupis is derived after Elvis' hit "All Shook Up."

At first I thought it was a joke, but a quick search on the Internet verified it to be true. In fact, I found out that a lot of animals are named after celebrities. An article in Wikipedia stated that "in binominal nomenclature it is accepted that the generic name or the specific name of an animal be formed to honor a person."

I don't know how honored Elvis would've felt had he known a wasp was being named after him, but I'm pretty sure he would've thought it funny.

Come to think of it, wouldn't a more suitable name for a wasp have been "igotstungis" derived from another one of Elvis' hits? What would I know, I'm just a public relations officer, not a scientist.

1 comment:

MĂ„rtenbrother said...

Ha ha ha!