Tuesday, February 23, 2016

What are species named after Rizal?

José Rizal was imprisoned at Fort Santiago and soon after he was banished at Dapitan where he plunged himself into studying of nature. He then able to collect a number of species of various classes: insects, butterflies, amphibians, reptiles, shells, snakes and plants.
Rizal sent many specimens of animals, insects, and plants for identification to the (Anthropological and Ethnographical Museum of Dresden), Dresden Museum of Ethnology. It was not in his interest to receive any monetary payment; all he wanted were scientific books, magazines and surgical instruments which he needed and used in Dapitan.
During his exile, Rizal also secretly sent several specimens of flying dragons to Europe. He believed that they were a new species. The German zoologist Benno Wandolleck named them Draco rizali after Rizal. However, it has since been discovered that the species had already been described by the Belgian-British zoologist George Albert Boulenger in 1885 as Draco guentheri.

There are three species named after Rizal:
  • Draco rizali – a small lizard, known as a flying dragon
  • Apogania rizali - a very rare kind of beetle with five horns
  • Rhacophorus rizali - a peculiar frog species. Rhacophorus rizali

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