Featured Image Credit: Jose Christopher E. Mendoza
By Sarah Sharkey
This is for all of the Harry Potter fans out there, scientists have found the Crustacean of Secrets.
Yes, there is now a crab named after a character in the beloved series. The official name of the crab is Harryplax severus. Severus Snape’s name will now be immortalized in the oceans forever and always.
The genus Harryplax is named after the late researcher Harry Conely who dug up many specimens in Guam almost 20 years ago. This may seem like a long time ago, so why is this new species just being announced now? Well, it was only recently that scientists at the National University of Singapore realized that this crab was its own new species. The self-professed Potter fans, Dr. Peter Ng and Dr. Jose Cristopher Mendoza decided on severus because Snape kept some of the most important secrets in the story just as this new species eluded discovery for nearly 20 years.
This new species is very small, measuring only 7.9 by 5.6 millimeters and its only known habitat is deep in the corral rubble surrounding Guam. With reduced eyes, it prefers dark depths and uses antennae to probe its surrounds.
This tribute to Severus Snape is not the first nod to Harry Potter from the scientific community. Recently there have been a few Potter inspired species naming. In 2006, a dinosaur species was named after Hogwarts, Dracorex hogwartsia. In 2014, a wasp was named Ampulex dementor. And last year a spider was named Eriovixia gryffindori.