Pop singer Jennifer Lopez, 44, has had a newly discovered water mite named after her. The Associated Press reported that scientists named the new species that was found near Puerto Rico in J. Lo’s honor.
In an email sent on Wednesday, July 16, biologist Vladimir Pesic explained that her music was a bit hit amongst the group as they were writing about their findings. Among the group’s favorite hits were “Ain’t It Funny,” “I Luh Ya Papi” and “All I Have.”
Pesic, the corresponding author of the study, explained the reasoning for this decision, stating, “The reason behind the unusual choice of name for the new species is… simple: J. Lo’s songs and videos kept the team in a continuous good mood when writing the manuscript and watching World Cup Soccer 2014.” The name is also fitting, considering J. Lo’s Puerto Rican heritage.
Pesic and a group of scientists collected the Litarachna lopezae mite from a coral reef in Mona Passage. The passage is a body of water that separates Puerto Rico from the Dominican Republic. The mites were collected during a series of trips throughout 2010-2012. The trips were organized by the University of Puerto Rico and the Caribbean Coral Reef Institute.
The mite was discovered at almost 70 meters (230 ft) below the surface. According to their study, this the greatest depth that pontarachnid mites have currently been found.
According to Pesic, the team of scientists had opposing sides during the world cup games however were able to bond over their mutual admiration of J. Lo. He wrote, “As European, I supported Germany, but the whole team was united with J. Lo songs.”
J. Lo follows in the footsteps of other celebrities who have had organisms named after them. For instance, a marine parasite was named after Bob Marley, and a spider was named after Bono in the past.
This study was published Tuesday, July 15, in the peer-reviewed online journal ZooKeys.