The Name of a New Bee Species Was Inspired by Sheldon Cooper

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Scientists have named plenty of species after celebrities. But Andre Nemesio, from the Universidade Federal de Uberlândia in Brazil, who discovered a new species of orchid bee, went in a slightly different direction in 2012: He named the bee Euglossa bazinga for the phrase oft-uttered by The Big Bang Theory character Sheldon Cooper.

"Sheldon Cooper's favorite comic word 'bazinga,' used by him when tricking somebody, was here chosen to represent the character," the paper describing the bee reads. "Euglossa bazinga has tricked us for some time due to its similarity to E. ignita, what led us to use 'bazinga.'"

Here's a look at the bee:

Image courtesy Andre Nemesio/Smithsonian magazine.

According to Smithsonian magazine, Nemesio—who has discovered a dozen species of orchid bees—hopes that using an easily recognizable name for the new species will draw attention to the loss of its habitat.

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December 20, 2012 - 9:00am
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