News media as far afield as the Sacramento Bee are excitedly picking up a CSIRO media release from last week in which Canberra’s CSIRO boffin Bryan Lessard has named a gold arsed horsefly after Beyonce.
According to the Australian National Insect Collection researcher responsible for officially ‘describing’ the fly as Scaptia (Plinthina) beyonceae, CSIRO’s Bryan Lessard, the fly’s spectacular gold colour makes it the “all time diva of flies”.
“It was the unique dense golden hairs on the fly’s abdomen that led me to name this fly in honour of the performer Beyoncé as well as giving me the chance to demonstrate the fun side of taxonomy – the naming of species,” Mr Lessard said.
“Although often considered a pest, many species of horse fly are extremely important pollinators of many plants,” he said.
“Horse flies act like hummingbirds during the day, drinking nectar from their favourite varieties of grevillea, tea trees and eucalypts.”
The rare Scaptia (Plinthina) beyonceae species of horse fly was collected in 1981, the year that Beyoncé was born, from north-east Queensland’s Atherton Tablelands together with two other previously unknown specimens.
The CSIRO’s info page for Bryan shows he’s based out of the Insect Collection on Clunies Ross Street.
Which means it’s time for this: