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Bug me do: The Beatles get species of beetle named after them

Bug me do: The Beatles get species of beetle named after them

© Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORBIS/ Corbis via Getty ImagesQuite a few famous music artists have had animal, plant or insect species named after them, but believe it or not, no one has never named a beetle after The Beatles — until now.

According to a scientific paper published this week and posted on, a species of cave beetle found by Dutch scientists and citizen researchers in Amsterdam’s Vondelpark has been given the taxonomical name Ptomaphagus thebeatles.

The paper notes that the insect, which measures just two millimeters long, is the first beetle to be named in honor of the band. The moniker also commemorates John Lennon and Yoko Ono‘s “Bed In for Peace” protest that took place in 1969 at Amsterdam’s Hilton Hotel, which is located near Vondelpark.  The specimen was collected in the park 50 years to the day after that event.

The geographic range of the Beatles beetle includes the Caucasus Mountains in Eastern Europe and Western Asia through Spain and Portugal. Scientists believe that the insect only made its way to the Netherlands in recent decades.

In sharing the news, the Leiden, Netherlands-based Naturalis Biodiversity Center posted a humorous image on its Twitter feed showing four beetles crawling across the famous crosswalk at London’s Abbey Road.

By Matt Friedlander
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