James Bond is getting his very own plant! Well, sort of. A new subgenus of Caribbean plant has been officially named Jamesbondia. While it might call to mind the action and romance of Ian Fleming’s famous spy (and what plant doesn’t, honestly), it’s actually named after the American ornithologist of the same name.
Sure, it’s not as exciting to Bond fans, but sometimes in life you get the Bond girl, and sometimes you get the Bond plant.
There are plenty of other animals, plants and other fascinating bits of nature named after celebrities, but the best ones have unique stories behind them. Here are some of our favorites:
Stephen Colbert: Agaporomorphus colberti
When you think of the late-night host, think of this diving beetle from Venezuela. Why Colbert? Entomologist Quentin Wheeler of the International Institute for Species Exploration said the name was “in sync with the institute’s goal to popularize science.”
Dolly Parton: Japewiella dollypartoniana
While it’s not exactly a lichen-ness, a species of lichen discovered in 2015 shared a parallel history with the country star. The creeping organism was named such because, like the lichen, Parton grew up near the Smokies. “Ms. Parton rose to stardom from humble beginnings in the mountains of eastern Tennessee on the edge of the Great Smoky Mountains where this species grows abundantly,” researchers wrote of their find.
Frank Zappa: Pachygnatha zappa
Like David Bowie, Zappa is apparently quite spider-like. This Cameroonian spider has markings that look a lot like the musician’s iconic ‘stache.
Kate Winslet: Agra katewinsletae
We’ll let the scientists responsible for this beetle name explain the choice: “Her character did not go down with the ship, but we will not be able to say the same for this elegant canopy species, if all the rain forest is converted to pasture,” entomologist Terry Erwin wrote of this green iridescent beetle from Costa Rica.
Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield: Filistata maguirei and Pritha garfieldi
Play Spider-Man, get an actual spider named after you. Sounds like a good deal.
Bram Stoker, author of “Dracula”: Draculoides bramstokeri
Pretty sure you know where this is going. This scary-looking schizomid, a type of arachnid, lives in total darkness in caves, and literally sucks the life out of its prey.
Johnny Cash: Aphonopelma johnnycashi
In February 2016, biologists named a tarantula after the man in black because, well, it hangs around Folsom Prison in California. The males are also all black, hinting at Cash’s “distinctive style of dress.”
Bob Marley: Gnathia marleyi
So maybe a bloodsucking sea parasite doesn’t SEEM like a good fit for the reggae legend, but when scientists discovered the crustacean floating around the Caribbean, they were struck by how, uh, special it was. “The species is named for the famous Caribbean singer Bob Marley, as this species is as uniquely Caribbean as Bob Marley,” wrote the trio of researchers responsible for its discovery.
Jennifer Lopez: Litarachna lopezae
This is actually kind of sweet. This Puerto Rican mite (OK, that’s not the sweet part) was named after Lopez in 2014 because the team of researchers that discovered it liked her music. “The reason behind the unusual choice of name for the new species is that J-Lo’s songs and videos kept the team in a continuous good mood when writing the manuscript and watching World Cup Soccer 2014,” the team’s leader wrote.
Steve Irwin: Elseya irwini
This species of Australian turtle isn’t just named after Steve Irwin, it was discovered by him and his dad. In the ’80s, Irwin and his naturalist dad, Bob Irwin, noticed a strange-looking turtle during a river survey. Upon further examination, scientists confirmed it was a theretofore unknown species. It was named Elseya irwini in Steve and Bob’s honor. (Worthy of note: Steve Irwin also has a snail named after him, and its scientific name is Crikey steveirwini. He would have approved.)
Lady Gaga: Gaga monstraparva and 18 (!) other fern species
In 2012, Lady Gaga got the ultimate honor, and no, it wasn’t a Grammy. The performer had a whole genus of ferns named after her, and all things considered, the event seemed to be fate. Not only did members of the genus have a DNA sequence that spelled out GAGA, the ferns also had a lot of Gaga-like qualities: Some of the ferns resembled her elaborate stage costumes, and their unusual way of reproducing reminded the project biologists of Gaga’s acceptance of different lifestyles.
“We wanted to name this genus for Lady Gaga because of her fervent defense of equality and individual expression,” said Duke University Biology professor Kathleen Pryer, who led the study. (Another bonus fact: monstraparva translates to “little monster” in Latin.)
David Bowie: Heteropoda davidbowie
“Hey, you look like this spider!” is not usually a compliment, but it is when you’re David Bowie and scientists name a big spider after you because of its bright yellow hair. Bowie’s body of work also played in to the spider theme: His backing band in the 1970s was called Spiders from Mars, and his 1987 world tour was called the Glass Spider Tour.
Beyonce: Scaptia beyonceae
The bootylicious singer now has a bootylicious fly counterpart. In 2012, biologists from the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization named a fancy new species of fly after the singer because the fly had a lovely golden butt. No, really. “It was the unique dense golden hairs on the fly’s abdomen that led me to name this fly in honour of the performer Beyonce as well as giving me the chance to demonstrate the fun side of taxonomy: the naming of species,” researcher Bryan Lessard told the Sydney Morning Herald.
Hugh Hefner: Sylvilagus palustris hefneri
Ha ha, get it? Because it’s a rabbit.