Thursday, July 06, 2006


I have been thinking about scientific names of late. Some ants have the coolest names ever. Gigantiops destructor is my favorite. That is one bad-ass name. It means, one supposes, big-eyed destructor. It looks the part, too. Thaumatomyrmex is another ant that looks like it should be working as a bouncer somewhere. I believe, however, that it means "wondrous ant" or "miraculous ant," which, when you think about it says something nice about whoever named it. That he would look at this new ant and think, this ant is a wondrous thing, a miracle, a thing to behold with awe. That's nice. In my internet explorations, I found the Antfarm's Guide to Scientific Names of Ants. Some of my favorites are the bald-headed ant (Phalacromyrmex), the thrifty ant (Pheidole), and Emery's wretched ant (Emeryopone). Seems like that last one should have a good story behind it, but I can't find any more information. I also wanted to know what Gnamptogenys means, since it seems like such a crazy name to me. But it wasn't there. I did, however, find a greek dictionary which seems to indicate that gnampto means bent or curved, and genys means jaw or cheek. So I suppose that must mean curved cheek, which isn't as exciting as I was hoping. Anyway, that AGSNA site is missing A LOT of names. It would really be great if it could be updated or some other site would take it up. That would be really cool.

No comments:

Post a Comment