Name That Newly Found Species, for Charity
December 7, 2009 1:28 PM   Subscribe

In 2005, the first comprehensive characterisation of decapod fauna of the continental margin of southwestern Australia was performed. 524 provisional species were identified, including 175 species (33%) that were new to science, each needing to be named. Earlier this year the naming rights for one particular unnamed spotted shrimp went up for auction to support the Australian Marine Conservation Society. Bob Rosenberry, journalist and publisher of Shrimp News International was an enthusiastic bidder, with plans to name the species Lebbeus shrimpnewsii, until he learned he couldn't name it after a commercial entity. The winner was a surprise to all involved: Lucien James "Luc" Longley, retired NBA player. (via)

Longley, the first Australian to play in the NBA, was not new to conservation efforts, and had gotten involved with ocean conservation in an earlier effort to preserve Ningaloo Reef.

The full report on the 2005 comprehensive characterisation of decapod fauna is available with other Museum Victoria Science Reports (Science Report No. 11 - HTML abstract, 108 pg, 7541 kb PDF)

As noted in the Wired (via) article, Lebbeus clarehanna wasn't the first species named as a charity fund-raiser. In 2007, an auction of rights to name 10 newly discovered species of fish efforts raised more than $2 million for conservation in eastern Indonesia, and in 2005 an internet casino paid $650,000 for the right to name the foot-high primate (common name: Monkey; scientific name: Callicebus aureipalatii - Latin for "golden palace"). Last year, you could have won the rights to name a new species of bats.

And if you're wondering about the rules for naming newly found fauna, the International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature has the International Code Of Zoological Nomenclature hosted online. Botanicals have their own rules.
posted by filthy light thief (12 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite particular unnamed spotted shrimp...

Was it a Claw Shrimp?
posted by lekvar at 1:34 PM on December 7, 2009 [1 favorite]

Basketball players or decapods?
posted by sebastienbailard at 1:50 PM on December 7, 2009 [1 favorite]

Somebody with more sass and verve could have called it the God Hates Shrimp.
posted by ardgedee at 1:53 PM on December 7, 2009

There are plenty of fish shrimp in the sea, so there is still the potential for Atyidae utdeuscontemno (assuming that the translation was correct).
posted by filthy light thief at 2:09 PM on December 7, 2009

Charity fund-rasier, eh? I wonder if paypal has released their funds yet.
posted by kuujjuarapik at 2:17 PM on December 7, 2009

That is an awesome gift. Luc Longley is the man.
posted by mike_bling at 2:23 PM on December 7, 2009

Strigiphilus garylarsoni.
posted by Jimbob at 3:05 PM on December 7, 2009

Oh man, there's hundreds of them, including a whole genus.

People with species named after them include all The Beatles, all The Sex Pistols, all The Ramones, and Frank Zappa.

posted by Jimbob at 3:09 PM on December 7, 2009

The decision to name three slime-mold beetles after Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld, however, didn't have anything to do with physical features, says Quentin Wheeler, a professor of entomology and of plant biology at Cornell for 24 years until last October, but to pay homage to the U.S. leaders. "We admire these leaders as fellow citizens who have the courage of their convictions and are willing to do the very difficult and unpopular work of living up to principles of freedom and democracy rather than accepting the expedient or popular," says Wheeler, who named the beetles and wrote the recently published monograph describing the new slime-mold beetle species while a professor at Cornell.

Professor Wheeler later had to have his tongue surgically removed from the lining of his cheek.
posted by UbuRoivas at 5:15 PM on December 7, 2009 [2 favorites] Monkey

You know everyone's going to go right on calling it a Cominskey.

Is there any way to stab an online casino?
posted by ormondsacker at 5:27 PM on December 7, 2009 [1 favorite]

Dr. Zoidberg: I'm swelling with patriotic mucus.
posted by SPrintF at 7:14 PM on December 7, 2009

Curiosities of Biological Nomenclature for all your taxonomic whimsy needs.
posted by hattifattener at 12:47 AM on December 8, 2009 [1 favorite]

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