Newfound species have historically been named for royalty, patrons of science, and sometimes the explorers who find them. Now it's your turn. If you've got the money.
An auction later this month will let anyone bid for the right to name a new species of monkey.
The brown-and-orange primate (pictured above) was found last year in Bolivia's Madidi National Park. Money raised in the auction will go to Bolivia's park service for wildlife protection and management.
"It's a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to discover a large mammal species, and an extreme honor to name it," said the discoverer, Robert Wallace, who is giving up that right. "It's far more important that the species habitat remains protected."
The Bronx Zoo-based Wildlife Conservation Society, where Wallace works, helped organize the auction, which will run Feb. 24 to March 3 at www.charityfolks.com/monkey.
Charity Folks recently sold a lunch with Bill Clinton and a guitar autographed by Paul McCartney.
Little is known about the new monkey, Wallace said. It stands about a foot tall, weighs two pounds and likes fruit. And it likes to belt out monkey duets while hugging a mate in the mornings.