Bob Marley has Caribbean crustacean named after him
Posted: Jul 11, 2012 1:55 PM ET
Last Updated: Jul 11, 2012 1:59 PM ET
Reggae star Bob Marley has scored a rare posthumous honour — a new species of crustacean has been named after him.
U.S. marine biologist Paul Sikkel named a small parasitic crustacean he discovered Gnathia marleyi, because, he says, it "is as uniquely Caribbean as Marley."
Marley, who died of cancer in 1981, made reggae into an international phenomenon with songs such as Exodus and No Woman, No Cry.
"I named this species, which is truly a natural wonder, after Marley because of my respect and admiration for Marley's music," Sikkel, a marine biologist at Arkansas State University, said in a statement Tuesday.
Gnathia marleyi is the first new species to be discovered in the Caribbean for two decades, but Marley’s namesake is no purveyor of hope and good times.
It is a blood-sucking crustacean that attacks fish, similar to land-based, blood-sucking ticks or disease-carrying mosquitoes, Sikkel said.
An infestation of the parasite can retard the growth of the fish.
A biology team at Arkansas State is studying the relationship between the health of coral reef communities and gnathiid populations. Caribbean coral reefs, where Gnathia marleyi hide before launching their attacks on fish, are vulnerable to disease.
In having a species named after him, Marley joins an exclusive club that includes U.S. President Barack Obama, who has a lichen named for him, and Elvis Presley, who has a wasp named after him, and Far side cartoonist Gary Larson, who lent his name to a species of louse called Strigiphilus garylarsoni. (For other examples, see a recent list compiled by Popular Mechanics magazine.)
It is not the first time Marley's name has been mentioned in connection with a strange critter. A sponge in the Great Barrier Reef called Pipestela candelabra is more informally known as the Bob Marley sponge because of its dreadlock-like appearance.
Sikkel describes his team's research into the life and impact of Gnathia marleyi in the current edition of the journal Zootaxa.
Top News Headlines
- Search continues for 2 missing New Brunswick fishermen
- A search effort has resumed for two missing fishermen off the coast of New Brunswick, after a distress call was issued from their boat early Saturday. more »
- Jeep driver apologizes after stunt kills Edmonton woman
- A man claiming to be the driver of a Jeep that struck and killed a spectator at a charity event in Edmonton says he is sorry for what happened. more »
- Senior Pakistani politician shot dead
- Gunmen in Pakistan have killed a senior member of Imran Khan's Movement for Justice (PTI) party outside her home in Karachi. more »
- Virginia parade crash driver likely had medical problem
- Authorities believe the driver who plowed into dozens of hikers marching in a Virginia mountain town parade suffered from a medical condition and did not cause the crash intentionally, an emergency official said Sunday. more »
Latest Technology & Science News Headlines
- High Arctic research station saved by new funding
- Canada's northernmost research lab won't have to shut down after all and will be able to resume year-round operations, with the help of a new grant from the federal government. more »
- 2 earthquakes felt in Ontario and Quebec
- Two earthquakes near the Ontario-Quebec border could be felt across both provinces this morning. more »
- Chris Hadfield's translator: Q&A with Canadian astronaut Jeremy Hansen
- While Chris Hadfield was returning from the International Space Station on Monday night, another Canadian astronaut was offering his own unique play-by-play of the action as the Soyuz capsule plunged to Earth. more »
- Why some Canadians want to die on Mars
- More than 80,000 people have applied for a Dutch non-profit organization's proposed one-way trip to Mars. Anna Maria Tremonti, host of The Current, spoke to four Canadians — two Mars one applicants, a member of the Mars One team, and astronaut Julie Payette — about whether it's a good idea. more »
Bob McDonald's Blog
- Chris Hadfield: The gravity of gravity May. 17, 2013 9:58 AM After five months of being Superman and a media superstar, Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield is now beginning the challenging task of adapting his mortal body and brain to life back on Earth.
Quirks & Quarks
- May 18: Apps for Apes May. 17, 2013 4:26 PM Scientists at more than 2 dozen zoos around the world, including the Toronto Zoo, have been using computer tablets to stimulate our bright orange primate cousins, the orangutans. And the orangutans have been loving it.
- Harper chief of staff resigns amid Senate expense scandal
- Spectator killed at Edmonton Jeep event
- Car drives into crowd at Virginia parade
- Toronto Mayor Rob Ford cancels weekly radio show
- Email is proof Senate greenlit expenses, Brazeau says
- Senior Pakistani politician shot dead
- Astronaut Chris Hadfield adjusts to 'earthling' life
- Winning ticket sold in Florida for $590M Powerball jackpot
- Iran hangs 2 men convicted of spying