critter names

James Kruse fnjjk1 at UAF.EDU
Wed Oct 10 11:15:41 CDT 2001

Oh great, Anthrax bee flies... the next killer bee scare???

I got a call yesterday from a medical doctor who was going to send me a
spider that had bitten a child. The reaction was mild, but the child's
parents were convinced that the spiders were being used as agents of
bioterrorism... oh boy...

I do have something taxonomic this time. Gazoryctra was a neglected generic
name brought back by Wagner & Tindale (1988) for a group of hepialids
(Lepidoptera). It is actually an old name (Hubner 1820) but doesn't pre-date
Hepialus (F). The species epithets all ended with 'us' to be correct with
Hepialus at the time of the change to Gazoryctra, and many folks still use
the 'us' endings. For example, keeping 'hyperboreus' and 'novigannus' in the
spirit of the zoological code, which if I remember correctly and have
understood properly, recommends the endings on species epithets remain
despite generic name changes. BUT in this case 'hyperborea' and 'noviganna'
are correct in latin (the way that Wagner & Tindale went with them, and on
the surface I agree with).


James J. Kruse, Ph.D.
Curator of Entomology
University of Alaska Museum
907 Yukon Drive
Fairbanks, AK, USA 99775-6960
tel 907.474.5579
fax 907.474.1987

on 10/10/01 9:57 AM, Neal Evenhuis at neale at BISHOPMUSEUM.ORG wrote:

> At 9:48 AM -0700 10/10/01, Doug Yanega wrote:
>> It is, incidentally, a side effect of the recent nonsense that my web
>> page of curious scientific names (which lists Anthrax) has been
>> getting a lot more hits in the last week. Surprising, considering how
>> far down the list that page must be when one does a search. Maybe it
>> depends on the search engine.
> ... and imagine the thoughts running through people's minds when they
> go to the page with Anthrax on our server referring to a checklist of
> the Bombyliidae held in the USNM Collection curated here at Bishop
> Museum, which I naively entitled years ago as "USNMBombcheck.html"
> ... (It's been getting an increase in hits the last few days too --
> no doubt a few from the FBI!)
> --Neal

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