Australian scientists name new species of assassin flies after Marvel favorites

Scientists named a bunch of creepy flies after Marvel characters. 

Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) recently named 165 new species. Five of the discovered “assassin flies,” as they’re called, were named after popular comic book icons.

Each one — the Stan Lee fly, the Thor fly, the Loki fly, The Black Widow fly and the Deadpool fly — has a trait similar to the assigned Marvel hero.

The Stan Lee fly —or Daptolestes leei — apparently looks like it has a white mustache and sunglasses. The Thor fly — or Daptolestes bronteflavus — has flecks of gold all over its body, and its name literally translates to “blond thunder.” The Black Widow fly — AKA Daptolestes feminategus — looks like it’s wearing Scarlett Johansson’s iconic leather suit.

“Deadpool fly is an assassin with markings on its back that resembles Deadpool’s mask,” Dr. Bryan Lessard said about the (sort of) Ryan Reynolds lookalike. “We chose the name Humorolethalis sergius. It sounds like lethal humor and is derived from the Latin words humorosus, meaning wet or moist and lethalis meaning dead.”

Assassin flies are characterized by their aggressive nature. These bugs primarily eat other insects and attack their prey with neurotoxic saliva.

While naming is done all in good fun, the scientists assert it plays an important role. Dr. Juanita Rodgriuez explained that the ability to identify species can help with conversation efforts and protect humans from dangerous predators. Plus, only a quarter of Australian insects have been identified by scientists, making the process all the more important. 

If you enjoyed this article, this gourmet chef wants you to try some bugs.

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