Curiosities of Biological Nomenclature
Mark Isaak
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Wordplay: Palindromes and Reversals


Aa Reichenbach f., 1854 (orchid) When he split this genus from the genus Altensteinia, Reichenbach kept just the first and last letters of the parent genus.
Aa Baker, 1940 (mollusk)
Aia Eyton, 1838 (bird)
Aka White, 1879 (bug)
Aka de Laubenfels, 1936 (sponge)
Ala Lockington, 1877 (crust.)
Aoa Nicéville, 1898 (lep)
Ara de Lacepède, 1799 (macaw)
Asa Basterot, 1825 (mollusk)
Aza Mulsant, 1850 (beetle)
Anna Risso, 1826 (mollusk)
Assa (Australian frog)
Atta Frabricius, 1805 (leafcutter ant)
Ababa Casey, 1897 (beetle)
Ailia Gray, 1831 (fish)
Ainia Jordon, 1919 (fish)
Arara Spix, 1824 (bird)
Sidis Pascoe, 1866 (beetle)
Sudus Kissinger, 1964 (weevil)
dixid (fly)
Sullus Oken, 1816 (fish)
Aragara Walker, 1860 (fly)
Afgoiogfa (hymenopteran)
Aidemedia James and Olson, 1991 (Hawaiian drepanidine finch)
Allenella (mollusc)
Agonopteryx allenella (oecophorid moth)
Bibarrambla allenella (oecophorid moth)

Aha ha Menke, 1977 (sphecid wasp)
Xela alex Thompson, 1999 (syrphid fly)
Orizabus subaziro Ratcliffe (scarab)

Lamprima aenea (Fabricius, 1792) (beetle)
Palindroma morogorom, P. aleykyela, P. avonova, P. sinis, and P. obmoimiombo Jocqué & Henrard, 2015 (spiders) The specific epithets are palindromized versions of "Morogoro" and "Kyela" (type localities in Tanzania), "nova" (new, referring to the genus and species), "sin" (Spanish for 'without', referring to virtual absense of a retrolateral tibial apophysis), and "miombo" (the type of woodland in which the spider was collected). No reason was given for naming the genus after "palindrome". [Euro. J. Taxon. 152: 1-33]
Pseudoglomeris aerea (cockroach)
Vegavis iaai Clarke et al. 2005 (Cretaceous bird) Named for the Argentine Antarctica Institute (IAA). [Nature 433: 305]


Eciton Latreille, 1804 (army ant)
Madeleina vokoban Balint and Johnson, 1994 (lycaenid butterfly) A reversal of Nabokov.
Emesis and Siseme (nemeobiid butterflies)
Muilla (wild lily) Split from and named for Allium, a large genus which includes onion and garlic.
Seleborca Andrassy, 1985 (nematode) split from genus Acrobeles
Sibara (mustard) after Arabis, also a mustard.

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