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New Insect Species Named After Nightwish Keyboardist Tuomas Holopainen

Noel Vasquez, Getty Images
Noel Vasquez, Getty Images

One thing has become apparent in recent years … researchers tend to love their hard rock and metal. The latest instance of this comes from a conservation biologist named Jukka Salmela, who discovered a new insect species in his home country of Finland and decided to name it after Nightwish keyboardist Tuomas Holopainen.

According to Science Daily, Salmela was aware that the musician was a nature lover and decided to honor him by naming the new species Sciophila Holopaineni. “I am very, very touched. This is the highest honor a nature nerd like me can receive,” Holopainen replied after Jukka, who collected and described the fungus gnat, asked him for permission to name the species after him.

So far, the new species of fungus gnat has been only known from two locations: the Törmäoja Natura Area in Savukoski, eastern Lapland, and a meadow close to the White Sea, Russian Karelia. The dark and beautiful gnat thrives in shadowy environments. In Törmäoja, it was caught in a river gulch next to the river source, while hiding under the shelter of the forest.

Salmela works for the Parks & Wildlife Finland of Metsähallitus, who are responsible for the management and species surveys of the State’s nature reserves. See a photo of the new insect species below.

Sciophila Holopaineni

Jukka Salmela / CC-By-4.0
Jukka Salmela / CC-By-4.0

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