Snake names honour Darwin, fire god, Louisiana professor

2018-10-22 11:24

A Louisiana professor is in heady company, honoured by having one of three newly identified species of snakes from the Galapagos Islands named after him.

Bob Thomas is an environmental biologist and head of the Centre for Environmental Communication at Loyola University New Orleans. He says he has a picture of the snake on his wall and it makes him smile every time he looks at it. It's called Pseudalsophis thomasi (sood-al-SO-fis TOM-uhs-eye).

He's been studying snakes since the 1970s and began studying those in Galapagos in 1984.

One of the new snakes was named after Charles Darwin – "a no-brainer", Thomas says – another after the Greek god of fire and the third after Thomas.

Darwin's theory of evolution arose from a voyage to the chain of volcanic islands.

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