Q: Is there really an ant named after Google?
by Courtesy California Academy of Sciences
You heard right. It seems that unusual species names aren’t limited to scientists’ favorite rock stars or Star Wars figures–now Internet search engines are in the game. Entomologist Brian Fisher named a new species of ant, Proceratium google, in honor of the mapping program Google Earth. Fisher, who chairs the entomology department at the California Academy of
Sciences, was impressed with the support he got from the Google Earth team when he was integrating the online warehouse of ant data, AntWeb, with the search functions of Google Earth. Now scientists can plot ant habitats in three dimensions or search for ant species by location. For the record, P. google lives in Madagascar and feasts exclusively on spider eggs. Get more ant facts at antweb.org.