Barack Obama & Bono: new spider species

33 new species discovered in the U.S., most of them in California

Barack Obama & Bono: new spider speciesAptostichus barackobamai. Courtesy of Jason Bond, Natural History Museum, Auburn University.
Aptostichus barackobamai. Courtesy of Jason Bond, Natural History Museum, Auburn University.

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Researchers from the Museum of Natural History and the Department of Biological Sciences of Auburn University in Alabama, revealed 33 new species of spiders which a few have personalities similar to President Barack Obama, singer from U2, Bono, and activist Cesar Chavez.

The spiders were found mainly in the western part of the United States particularly in California.

The Aptostichus specie is known more commonly as a trap door spider that typically comes out at night to hunt.

Previously there were only 7 of these types of spiders known in this family, but now add up to 40 total.

Species that were previously discovered were named after a few celebrities like Stephen Colbert (Aptostichus stephencolberti), and Angelina Jolie (Aptostichus angelinajolieae).

In these new recent discoveries, researchers have decided to name one in honor of President Barack Obama (Aptostichus barackobamai) who is also known to be a fan of “Spider Man.”

Others who were also honored with a spider name are, environmental advocate Edward Abbey (Aptostichus edwardabbeyi), singer of U2, Bono (Aptostihus bonoi), Penn Jillette (Aptostichus pennjillettei), and a character from the movie Star Wars (Aptostichus sarlacc), and last but not least, Cesar Chavez (Aptostichus chavezi).

Jason Bond, who is the director of Auburn University Museum of Natural History, said that the vast majority of these new species were found in California, which has great diversity in its region.

Brenda.Colon@sandiegored.com

Omar.Martinez@sandiegored.com

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