top of page

British entomologist names new species of beetle after Greta Thunberg

Updated: Feb 1, 2022

From the NHM London Press Release

A newly discovered species of beetle has been named after young climate activist Greta Thunberg.

Nelloptodes gretae, which is less than 1mm long and has no eyes or wings, belongs to the Ptiliidae family of beetles which includes some of the smallest insects in the world. The beetle was first collected in samples of soil and leaf litter from Nairobi, Kenya by Dr William C. Block in the 1960s. Dr Block’s collection was donated to the Natural History Museum, London in 1978.

Dr Max Barclay, Senior Curator in Charge, Coleoptera at the Natural History Museum, said: “There are likely hundreds of exciting new species still to be discovered around the world as well as in the vast collections of the Natural History Museum. The name of this beetle is particularly poignant since it is likely that undiscovered species are being lost all the time, before scientists have even named them, because of biodiversity loss - so it is appropriate to name one of the newest discoveries after someone who has worked so hard to champion the natural world and protect vulnerable species".



bottom of page