Climate activist Greta Thunberg now has a teeny, tiny beetle named after her

Written by on October 27, 2019 in Celebrity Critters - No comments

Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg can add one more small thing to her resume.

The teenager now has a miniature beetle named after her.

The new species of beetle is officially known as Nelloptodes gretae in recognition of Thunberg’s advocacy for climate action and protecting the natural world, according to London’s Natural History Museum.

The species was originally collected in Kenya between 1964 and 1965 by an entomologist called William Brock.

But it was Michael Darby, a scientific associate at the museum, who examined the specimens with a high-powered microscope and honoured the young woman by naming a new species after her. The newly named species is pale yellow and gold, has no eyes or wings and measures just 0.79 millimetres.

“The family that I work on are some of the smallest known free-living creatures,” he explained in a statement. “They are not parasitic and are not living inside other creatures. Few of them measure more than a millimetre long.”

This may well be the first species named after Thunberg, who started mobilizing youth to join climate strikes and urging world leaders to protect the planet for future generations.

And by naming a blind beetle after Thunberg is not at all a troll job.

Darby calls himself a “fan.”

“I’m really a great fan of Greta,” Darby added. “She is a great advocate for saving the planet and she is amazing at doing it, so I thought that this was a good opportunity to recognise that.”

He also didn’t name the puny species after her because of their small — they just happen to be the insects he studies.

In fact, the museum notes, Darby has named several species of Ptiliidae after prominent people, including one for Sir David Attenborough

“N. gretae is certainly in prestigious company,” the museum added.

Thuberg has been touring through Western Canada in the last few weeks, becoming the central figure in climate rallies in Edmonton and Vancouver that have drawn thousands of people.

But she has also visited indigenous groups and traveled with researchers to retreating glaciers.

Photo Natural History Museum

 

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About the Author

Dawn Walton

Recovering newspaper reporter.

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