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December 05, 2009


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Well, we sell naming rights to everything else, so why not to newly discovered species? On a somewhat related note--of the relationship between names of plants and animals and humans--I was wondering if the abrophyllum orans, aka Native Hyrdangea, is any relation to me?

Eric Fink

I wish I'd have thought of this five years ago. Instead of naming my son (Alexander Lorenz) after a former Czech leader and a Broadway lyricist, I could have sold the naming rights to some corporation. I'd gladly have called him Harris Teeter Fink in exchange for a lifetime supply of groceries.

Kim Krawiec

Al -- how fitting that youre named after a flower (a hydrangea is a flower isnt it? You can tell that I dont do the gardening).
Eric -- I never did figure out if this was a hoax or real, but in case you plan on more little ones:

Carl C. Christensen

Though some biologists criticize the practice of selling naming rights, others have been known to show a certain lack of seriousness about the enterprise that suggests the criticism is a bit overblown. Examples include Ba humbugi Solem, 1976 (a land snail from the island of Mba, Fiji) and Vini vidivici Steadman and Zarriello, 1987 (an extinct parrot from the Cook Islands). And then there's Pison eu Menke, 1988 (a South American wasp), which would appear to test the limits of the provision of the International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature's Code of Ethics that "No author should propose a name that, to his or her knowledge or reasonable belief, would be likely to give offense on any grounds." Not to mention Rochlingia hitleri Guthorl, 1934 (an extinct insect).


Nice post.

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