Curiosities of Biological Nomenclature
Mark Isaak       specimen@curioustaxonomy.net
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Etymology: Interjections

Abracadabrella birdsville Zabka, 1991 (jumping spider)
Aha ha Menke, 1977 (sphecid wasp) Menke's exclamation upon receiving the specimen was "Aha!"
Alaptus ah and A. oh Girault, 1930 (mymarid wasp)
Aloha Kirkaldy, 1904 (fulgorid bug) Etymology: "'Aloha', the Hawaiian salutation (lit. 'love')."
Arfia Van Valen, 1965 (a dog-like fossil hyaenodont)
Brachylophus bulabula (Fijian iguana) from "bula," the Fijian word for "hello", reduplicated to signify extra enthusiasm.
Damnxanthodium calvum (Greenm.) Strother (composite) The genus name refers to the problem of distinguishing these daisy look-alikes.
Hakuna matata Gumovsky & Bouček, 2006 (eulophid wasp) Named for the Swahili phrase meaning "no worries", popularlized by "The Lion King." So named because the wasp is from tropical Africa, and the phrase captures an African spirit. [Zool. Med. Leiden 80: 79]
Hatena Okamoto and Inouye, 2006 (flagellate eukaryote) This unusual single-celled organism with a "half-plant, half-predator" life cycle gets its name from a Japanese interjection roughly meaning "unusual" or "enigmatic".
Martialis heureka Rabeling, Brown and Verhaagh, 2008 (ant) Two of these ants were discovered and subsequently lost. The rediscovery five years later prompted the epithet heureka, Greek for "I found it!") [PNAS 0806187105]
Pitohui Lesson and Garnot, 1827 (poisonous New Guinea bird) The name comes from a response to tasting it.
Quisarctus Fujimoto 2015 (tartigrade) "a combination of Quis, a latin word for 'Who?' or 'What?' referring to the author's first impression of this animal," and arctus, "bear", referring to "water bear", a common name of tartigrades. [Zootaxa 3948: 146]
Sayonara Jordan & Steele, 1906 (fish)
Scelio balo Yoder, 2014 (parasitic wasp) "derived from the Latin word for roar, howl, grumble, or snort (things taxonomists do during a revision)." [Zookeys 380]
Simulium damnosum (black fly) Refers to the damnable vector of the onchocerciasis (river blindness) parasite.
Tamoya ohboya (Bonaire banded box jellyfish) "I bet 'Oh Boy' is the first thing said when a biologist or layman encounters the jellyfish," explained Lisa Peck, marine biology teacher, as part of her winning entry in a public naming contest for the species.

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