Before running the most controversial and bombastic political campaign in recent presidential history, Donald Trump was perhaps best known for plastering his name, preferably plated in gold, across absolutely everything he could – especially on very tall phallic symbols. He might not be as proud of his latest namesake, though. It’s a moth and it’s known for its weird “hair” and its tiny genitalia.
This centimeter-wide moth was identified by evolutionary biologist and lepidopterist Vazrick Nazari, who announced the find in a paper published Tuesday in the open-access journal ZooKeys. Nazari settled on the name N. donaldtrumpi because the silky yellow-white scales these moths develop on their heads in adulthood reminded him of the President-elect’s signature hairdo.
By meticulously examining specimens of the moth and its close relatives, Nazari was able to catalogue its unique anatomy, including its male genitalia, which is “comparatively smaller” than the moth’s close relative Neopalpa neonata, according to the study.
Oh, but it gets worse for the President Elect. The moth is native to Trump’s nemesis state of California, and into Mexico. Did I mention that it has really tiny genitals? Well, it’s worth mentioning again.
The moth is also known as a Twirler Moth, and like the man it’s named from, it exhibits unexplainable bursts of frantic behavior. If it had hands, it would probably be tweeting weird vendettas at 3:00 am as well.
Naming the moth after Trump wasn’t just a silly jab at the thin-skinned man baby about to occupy the Oval Office. It was a pretty clever attempt at bringing attention to the moth and to the environment.
“By naming this species after the 45th President of the United States, I hope to bring some public attention to, and interest in, the importance of alpha-taxonomy in better understanding the neglected micro-fauna component of the North American biodiversity.”
The timing couldn’t be better. Republicans are already set to roll back parts of the Endangered Species Act.
Dr. Peter Oboyski, manager and curator of the Essig Museum of Entomology at University of California, Berkeley, hopes that this finding will help bring attention to all species of moths, most of which we may never discover, before they go extinct. As for Trump, Dr. Oboyski said:
Hopefully our new president will take pride in having a species named for him, recognize the enormous task set before biologists and encourage his administration to support research to discover and describe the overwhelming biodiversity all around us while it is still there.
Featured image via Christopher Furlong/Getty Images