Thu, Dec 20, 2018 - Page 7 News List

Blind creature named after Trump

The Guardian

A newly discovered blind and burrowing amphibian is to be officially named Dermophis donaldtrumpi, in recognition of US President Donald Trump’s climate change denial.

The name was chosen by Aidan Bell, cofounder of sustainable building materials company EnviroBuild, who paid US$25,000 at an auction for the right.

The small, legless creature was found in Panama. Bell said its ability to bury its head in the ground matched Trump’s approach to global warming.

Trump’s distinctive hair has already led to comparisons to a poisonous furry caterpillar and a golden-plumed pheasant, while a yellow-crowned moth was named Neopalpa donaldtrumpi last year.

Climate change is already harming US lives, from wildfires to floods, and would get worse, according to a US government report published last month.

Trump’s response: “I don’t believe it.”

The only event his administration put on at this month’s UN climate summit in Poland extolled the virtues of fossil fuels, to cries of “shame on you” from protesters.

The discovered creature is a caecilian and its naming rights were auctioned to raise money for the Rainforest Trust.

The scientists who found the 10cm amphibian have agreed to use the name Dermophis donaldtrumpi when they officially publish the discovery in scientific literature.

“It is the perfect name. Caecilian is taken from the Latin caecus, meaning ‘blind,’ perfectly mirroring the strategic vision President Trump has consistently shown toward climate change,” Bell said.

As an amphibian, the shiny animal is particularly susceptible to the effects of global warming and is therefore in danger of becoming extinct as a result of its namesake’s climate policies, the Rainforest Trust said.

“Protecting the world’s remaining rainforests is acknowledged as one of the most effective ways to mitigate climate change, yet every day, nearly 70,000 acres [28,328 hectares] of rainforest are destroyed forever,” Rainforest Trust UK executive director Chris Redston said.

“This destruction is not only one of the main causes of climate change, but it is also having a devastating impact on endangered wildlife, indigenous communities and the planet’s weather patterns,” Redston added.

This story has been viewed 2206 times.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top