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Homechevron_rightOpinionchevron_rightMeet Obama, a new...

Meet Obama, a new coral-reef fish!

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Meet Obama, a new coral-reef fish!
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New York: After a trapdoor spider, a speckled freshwater darter (fish), a parasitic hairworm and an extinct lizard, outgoing US President Barack Obama now has a new species on his name: A coral-reef fish.

Scientists have named a new set of small pink and yellow coral-reef fish — found exclusively within the marine protected area in Hawaii — in honour of Obama.

The fish now bears the formal scientific name, Tosanoides Obama.

The fish was discovered during a June 2016 expedition by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument in the Hawaiian Islands.

“We decided to name this fish after President Obama to recognise his efforts to protect and preserve the natural habitat, including its expansion,” said lead author Richard Pyle, Bishop Museum scientist.

“The expansion of Papahanaumokuakea adds a layer of protection to one of the last great wilderness areas on Earth,” Pyle added.

Male obamas have a distinctive spot on the dorsal fin near the tail, which is blue around the edge and red with yellow stripes in the centre.

“It is reminiscent of President Obama’s campaign logo, so it seemed especially appropriate for the fish to be named in honour of the President,” Pyle said.

The new species was first discovered and collected on a dive to 300 feet at Kure Atoll, 1,200 miles northwest of Honolulu. The study was published in the open-access scientific journal ZooKeys.

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