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Scientists Discover New Snail And Name It After Greta Thunberg

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Scientists Discover New Snail And Name It After Greta Thunberg

Greta Thunberg is having a good run. Not only was she named TIME's 2019 Person Of The Year, she has also been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize - and now she's had a snail named after her.

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That's right, the young Swedish activist now shares her name with a newly discovered species of snail - the team of researchers that found the creature have named it Craspedotropis gretathunbergae in her honour.

They're not just naming the animal after the 17-year-old for the sake of it either... this species of land snail (and others like it) is likely to suffer as a result of climate change, famously Greta's bête noire.

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According to the Biodiversity Data Journal, the snail itself is said to have a 'distinct sculpture' with a high conical, consisting of 5.25 to 5.75 convex whorls. It is said to be around 2.7 - 2.9mm high and 1.7 - 1.8mm wide.

Greta has also been named after a new species of beetle. Credit: Natural History Museum
Greta has also been named after a new species of beetle. Credit: Natural History Museum

Late last year, it was announced that the climate activist's name was to be bestowed upon a new species of beetle, as a way of marking her 'outstanding contribution' to raising awareness of climate change.

The newly described Nalloptodes gretae belongs to a group of some of the smallest known free-living animals. They have no eyes, no wings, and are just 1mm long.

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But they do have long antennae on their heads which resemble pigtails - like those the campaigner has been seen to wear.

Greta with her hair in pig tail plaits. Credit: PA
Greta with her hair in pig tail plaits. Credit: PA

Michael Darby, a Scientific Associate at the Natural History Museum, said: "These beetles are so very small that my wife has described them as being like animated full stops.

"But actually many are a whole lot smaller than a full stop. I'd also like to stress that I've not named this species after Greta because it is small - it's just that this is the group that I work on."

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Michael has named several species of Ptiliidae after prominent people, including one for Sir David Attenborough, meaning that 'Nalloptodes gretae' is certainly in prestigious company.

Michael went on to say: "I suspect that this could very well be the first time a species has been named after Greta. I don't know of any other beetle named after her, that's for sure.

"I'm really a great fan of Greta. 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."

Featured Image Credit: YouTube/ Taxon Expeditions

Topics: Science, Greta Thunberg, Animals

Rebecca Shepherd
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