Inauguration day looms with nothing but a matter of days between the Obama and Trump administrations. Hide the tears with laughter in one last scientific salute to President Obama with these nine critters named after him- more than any other former president. Our feathered and scaly friends alike are sure to miss him as much as we will.
The smallest of the brood is comprised of Paragordius obamai, a species of hairworm; Baracktrema obamai, turtle blood fluke; Caloplaca obamae, firedot lichen; and Obamadon gracillis, an extinct insect-eating lizard.
Photo: Animalparty, CC-BY
Aptostichus barackobamai, a species of trapdoor spider, was discovered in 2012 by Auburn University’s Jason Bond. According to Science, A. barackobamai can be found “among the redwoods in north-central California, ambushing countless dimwitted insects, frogs, and even snakes that venture past its hidden trapdoors.” You have to admit, President Obama and the trapdoor spider have style in dealing with adversaries.
The last array is in memoriam of Obama’s environmental legacy. Etheostoma Obama, spangled darter; Teleogramma obamaorum, an African cichlid species; Tosanoides obama, coral reef basslet; and Nystalus obamai, western striated puffbird, all honor the celebration of science the White House has held over the past eight years. The former three fish are named in gratitude to the Obamas dedication to science education and green technology while the later bird species could be habitat-less without the technologies.
So, “Thanks, Obama,” for your contributions to our country.
Molly Harris is a freelance writer based in Athens, Georgia.