New bird species named for Harvard 'father of biodiversity'
An example of the antbird species Myrmoderus eowilsoni, named after a retired Harvard biologist known as 'the father of biodiversity.' (source: Rainsforest Trust / Andrew Spencer)
The Associated Press
Published Thursday, December 14, 2017 11:11AM EST
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - Here's something to tweet about: A new species of bird has been named for a retired Harvard biologist known as "the father of biodiversity."
The Rainforest Trust said Wednesday that the antbird discovered last year in northern Peru has been given the name Myrmoderus eowilsoni in honour of E.O. Wilson.
Wilson is a myrmecologist -- an entomologist who studies ants. He's credited with coining the term "biodiversity" in 1988.
Wilson said having a bird named for him is akin to winning a Nobel prize "because it's such a rarity to have a true new species discovered."
Rainforest Trust CEO Paul Salaman called the new bird's namesake "the most esteemed conservation biologist alive."
The 88-year-old Wilson is an honorary curator of entomology at Harvard.