After a national contest with 810 entries, a jumping spider, discovered in Eucador by the Beaty Biodiversity Museum’s scientific director Wayne Maddison, has been named Lapsias lorax – after a Dr. Seuss character.
The museum asked contestants to submit a name to follow Lapsias, the genus classification given to spiders in 1900 by Eugène Simon. Lorax refers to a small creature in a well-loved Dr. Seuss book.
“The name is perfect,” says Maddison. “The Lorax has a prominent yellow mustache, just like the spider, and the Lorax advocated for the preservation of trees, reflecting the Beaty Museum’s focus on biodiversity.”
The contestant who proposed the winning name is Tristan Long of Waterloo, Ontario.
Background information about the contest:
The 5mm-long adult male spider that Maddison found in Ecuador in 2010 is the only known representative of the species. Like all jumping spiders, it has four large eyes on the front of its face, four more on the top of its head, and a unique diagonal yellow stripe on its jaws.
The contest ran from May 22 to August 22, 2011. Maddison officially announced the winning name today during a lecture at the Beaty Biodiversity Museum.
For videos and photos of the spider visit: http://beatymuseum.ubc.ca/spider-contest
The contest was part of the Museum’s summer programming: Exploring biodiversity in forests, wetlands, oceans and urban environments. For more information on current programing and museum hours, visit http://www.beatymuseum.ubc.ca/