Monday, January 12, 2015

Boops boops in a Bucket

Way back when, I made the mistake of listing off all the species I could think of whose genus names are the same as their species names. In short, their scientific name is the same word repeated: Bison bison, Chinchilla chinchilla, Iguana iguana, as well as the more exotic-sounding ones such as Bubo bubo (the Eurasian eagle-owl) and Mephitis mephitis (the striped skunk).

I call the post a mistake because it’s subsequently only given some people the opportunity to point out how I’m an idiot for omitting their favorite same-name scientific creatures. Among those I skipped were Gulo gulo — the common wolverine, which I’ve just found out is called “skunk bear” in some circles — and the sea snail Volva volva volva, which, yes, is named for exactly the reason that you’d guess. But just before the end of 2014, another double-namer was brought to my attention that seemed worthy enough for its own post.

This is that post. (And unlike some, this person pointed it out nicely.)

Yep, Boops boops, a big-eyed little fish otherwise known as the bogue. Technically, that name is pronounced “BOH-ops BOH-ops” — literally “cow eye, cow eye” — but why not better the world and just refer to this guy as “BOOPS BOOPS”? The Wikipedia page for the species even has a perfectly reasonable, scientifically accurate caption that nonetheless sounds like it the chorus of some old-timey children’s rhyme.

All hail Boops boops, your new favorite intersex Atlantic demersal and semi-pelagic feeding fish!

And if I still haven’t mentioned your favorite double-named species, please notify me without calling me an idiot.

[Touches own nose. “Boops boops!” Touches own nose. “Boops boops!”]

Amminall fun, previously:

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