Biologists are a cheeky lot, and their latest Twitter joke is a doozy. They’re making fun of animals with nonsensical common names.
Common names are exactly what they sound like: The names of animals people are more familiar with, different from their scientific or species name. For example, a cat’s common name is a cat, obviously. Its scientific name is Felis catus. Only sometimes the names we call creatures are pretty silly.
Shark researcher and blogger David Shiffman decided to get the ball rolling on this latest hashtag on Tuesday afternoon.
Ok scientists & naturalists, it's time for a new hashtag game. #StupidCommonNames . List animals with stupid common names. Photos encouraged— Dr. David Shiffman (@WhySharksMatter) September 1, 2015
And in the last couple hours, the hilarious tweets have swelled to a cacophony. Here’s a list of our favorites.
Water Bears not made of water or are a bear but are really cool if you dont know them check them out #StupidCommonNames— Haxley Gomez Vigil (@Haxleygv) September 1, 2015
Sea Cucumbers don't taste anything like a cucumber. #StupidCommonNames— Amy (@bunnyhugger75) September 1, 2015
The Brown Creeper is generally quite respectful of personal boundaries. #StupidCommonNames— Kingfisher & Wombat (@UrsulaV) September 1, 2015
Gardner Snakes never help me in the garden. #StupidCommonNames— Amy (@bunnyhugger75) September 1, 2015
Image via Marshmallowbunnywabbit/Wikimedia (CC BY 3.0)