Top 10 New Species of 2012
(Photo credit: Ned DeLoach)
Name: Tamoya ohboya
Common Name: Bonaire Banded Box Jelly
How it made the Top 10: This strikingly beautiful but venomous box jelly has had so many sightings since 2001 that it had a common name before being officially described in 2011 after the capture of a specimen in 2008.The sightings of this new species remind us of the opportunities for citizen scientists to participate in species exploration. More than 300 entries were submitted in an online competition to name this new species and hundreds of votes were cast to select ohboya as the winner, a name suggested by high school biology teacher Lisa Peck. Ms. Peck presumed people must exclaim “Oh Boy!” when they first encounter this amazing jelly – including swimmers, scuba divers, scientists, and even doctors who have treated victims of its serious stings.
Etymology: ohboya is named “Oh Boy!!!” after the reaction that someone could have when first encountering this species.
Type Material: Holotype and paratypes - National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.
Type Locality: Divi Flamingo, Bonaire, Netherlands (Dutch Caribbean)
Reference: Collins, A.G., Bentlage, B., Gillan, W., Lynn, T.H., Morandini, A.C. & Marques, A.C. (2011). Naming the Bonaire banded box jelly, Tamoya ohboya, n. sp. (Cnidaria: Cubozoa: Carybdeida: Tamoyidae). Zootaxa 2753: 53 – 68.