Why Scientific Nomenclature is So Important: Q&A With ICZN Commissioner Frank Krell

Frank Krell, Ph.D.

By Josh Lancette In 2015, the Entomological Society of America journals became compliant with the requirements of the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature (“the Code”), which is produced by the International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature (ICZN). Being compliant means that the journals and articles follow rules that allow new nomenclatural acts to be considered scientifically […]

Where Do Shield-back Katydids Fit within the Katydid Evolutionary Tree?

By John P. Roche With more than 7,000 species globally, the katydids are the second most diverse group within the insect order Orthoptera, after the grasshoppers. Katydids are members of the taxonomic family Tettigoniidae, and though familiar to people throughout the world for their musical mating call, the specifics of many aspects of the evolutionary […]

Curious Scientific Names Can Make Insects Famous

By Eduardo Faúndez Scientific names — at least for plants and animals — are Latinized words, and the Latin language was selected for the naming of new organisms because it’s a dead tongue. Why choose a dead tongue? Here’s why: 1) A dead tongue is neutral because no one speaks it as their native language, […]

How to Describe a New Species: Getting into the “Spuh Nov” Club

By Dominic Evangelista One of my life-long dreams has been to discover and describe a species previously unknown to science. It’s something a lot of aspiring naturalists dream about. However, unlike my other dream of getting one at-bat for the Yankees, this one is actually pretty doable. In fact, as of November 2014 I have […]

Is it Honey Bee or HoneyBee? Bed Bug or Bedbug? House Fly or Housefly?

By Richard Levine Writing insect names using American English can be difficult. Some species have different names depending on where you are, or with whom you are speaking (think “ladybug” or “ladybird” or “lady beetle”). More often than not, an insect may not even have an official common name because out of the million or […]