Sunday, June 23, 2013

The Bazinga Bee: In Honor of the Big Bang Theory

Recently on The Natural World, we've been doing our fair share of yakking about bees: FIRST, we talked about the house in Utah with the ENORMOUS beehive in it! THEN, just a few days ago, we talked about Bumblebee! (Granted, Bumblebee is a giant silicon-based alien lifeform from outerspace, still counts).  Today, I'm going to introduce you to a brand new bee: Bazinga!!

For those of you who enjoy the Big Bang Theory, you might think that I just pulled a joke: after all, the star of the show, Sheldon Cooper, always utters that catchphrase following one of his "classic pranks!"  However, this is no joke: in honor of the hilarious show, a bunch of Brazilian brainiacs have betrothed this bee with the brand Bazinga!!

With a full scientific name of Euglossa bazinga, the Bazinga bee is one of many creatures over the years whose scientific name references or honors someone or something. (We actually did a post on some of my favorites awhile back, and HERE is a link to that post.)  Not only does the name give honor, it also helps to draw attention to the animal. According to Dr. André Nemésio“Many orchid-bee species inhabit forested areas that may soon vanish and, as a consequence, it is possible that the bees might disappear, too,” Nemésio said.

Dr. Nemésio went on to say that, “For many areas and many species, only a strong action from the society can reverse the extinction process. So, I think it is also a valid way to make people know about these wonderful creatures and the situation concerning their conservation status.”

The executive producer of the show, Steve Molaro, stated in a press release that “We are always extremely flattered when the science community embraces our show. Sheldon would be honored to know that Euglossa bazinga was inspired by him. In fact, after ‘Mothra’ and griffins, bees are his third-favorite flying creatures.”

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