The newly discovered insect to be named after the soon-to-be 45th President of the United States, Donald Trump. This living species looks strikingly similar to the politician, with its bright blonde crown of ‘hair’ and beady eyes.
Its habitat is Southern California in the US and Baja California in Mexico – whereas the real Donald Trump prefers to reside in New York, although he will soon be relocated to the White House.
Evolutionary biologist Dr Vazrick Nazari described his discovery in the latest edition of the open access journal Zookeys.
The newly documented moth is the second moth associated with Trump, as the southern flannel moth in its caterpillar stage was dubbed the “Donald Trump’s Hair moth,” but that moniker was just a nickname.
As for why moths so often seem to sport Trump-like “hair-do’s,” author Vazrick Nazari of the Canadian National Collection of Insects, Arachnids and Nematodes explained to Seeker: “Moths are the second largest group of insects (after beetles) and among the most diverse animals. They are geologically very old, and through millions of years of evolution they have acquired the most amazing life cycles, adaptations and characteristics.”
“I hope to bring some public attention to the importance of conservation of the fragile habitats in the United States,” he said, adding that the dune regions are “under imminent danger of destruction. The incoming administration should make every effort to continue preserving these important ecosystems that still contain undiscovered and undescribed species.”
Biologist discovered the moth while examining specimens at the Bohart Museum of Entomology, University of California.
When he saw this one, he realised it didn’t match any previously know species. It has now been recognised as the second species of a genus of twirler moths.
You can recognise it by the yellowish-white scales present on the head in adults.