Just when you thought the titan of the drag world couldn’t be more iconic, RuPaul now has been immortalised with a new species of fly.
Australian entomologists announced they have named a new species of soldier fly after the ironic Drag Race host. The soldier fly – whose Latin name is Opaluma rupaul – sports a bold kaleidoscope of colours. So it’s as eye-catching as RuPaul herself.
Bryan Lessard, an entomologist for Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), said naming the new fly was an “obvious decision”.
“I was watching a lot of RuPaul’s Drag Race while examining the species, and I know it would challenge RuPaul on the runway serving fierce looks,” Lessard said, the Guardian reported.
Category is: new species extravaganza! Introducing the @RuPaul soldier fly, serving charisma and uniqueness, one of 150 new species named by @CSIRO in the last year! #csirocollections https://t.co/CMRbUODVqN pic.twitter.com/TCPNFGYUDo
— Dr Bryan Lessard (@BrytheFlyGuy) September 14, 2021
He added that the fly has a “costume of shiny metallic rainbow colours” and has “legs for days”.
“I think once (Ru) sees the fly she’ll realise it’s quite fierce and hopefully appreciate the name,” Lessard added.
He told CNN that he wanted to give this group of flies a “memorable name because it needs attention”. Lessard described how the “first specimen of this RuPaul fly” was collected “over a hundred years ago”.
He said the specimen “sat neglected in a museum collection until someone with the knowledge of that group came along to name and document them”.
According to CNN, several of the new soldier flies that Lessard named are from areas affected by the devastating bushfires that ravaged Australia between 2019 and 2020.
“These species would have burnt, and no one would have cared if I hadn’t given them a name,” Lessard said.
CSIRO has named over 150 new species recently, and the RuPaul fly isn’t the first to be named after a pop culture figure. The organisation named three newly discovered beetles after the legendary elemental bird Pokemon Articuno, Montres and Zapdos.
Almost a decade ago, Lessard named the Scaptia beyonceae fly after music legend Beyonce.
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