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Dracunculus species NOT to get

  • Subject: Dracunculus species NOT to get
  • From: "Randall M. Story" <story@caltech.edu>
  • Date: Tue, 28 May 2002 10:08:27 -0500 (CDT)

Title: Dracunculus species NOT to get

I just noticed that there is a second genus of Dracunculus--not a plant, but instead a parasitic nematode (worm)!!  I had thought that generic names were unique, but after a bit of searching I found out this is indeed possible if the genera are from different kingdoms.  Does anyone know how common this situation is?  Are they going to fix this confusion at some point?  If so, which kingdom "wins"???

The nematode Dracunculus looks like a pretty nasty beast.  If you have a VERY strong stomach do a Google search (image option) for Dracunculus.  If you ever run into anyone who thinks the plant is ugly or smells bad, point them that way.  It's clear that hours near the plant at its smelliest would be far, far better than an encounter with one of the animal sort of Dracunculus!!

Does this mean there's a beautiful flower somewhere out there named (or waiting to be named) Dermatobia?

I hope this doesn't ruin anyone's dinner (although it's probably a more effective weight loss strategy than eating glucomannan (a carbohydrate derived from Amorphophallus)).


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