Great Moments in Freshwater Research

Posted on June 30, 2013

Proof that Nessie-ssity is the Mother of Invention.  In 1975, the well-known conservationist Sir Peter Scott published an article in Nature (vol. 258, pp. 466-468) giving the Loch Ness monster a scientific name, such a name being a prerequisite for endangered species protection under British legislation.  Inspired by two underwater photographs taken in 1972, the name chosen was Nessiteras rhombopteryx, from the Greek for “the monster of Ness with the diamond shaped fin”.  The Daily Telegraph later pointed out that the name was an anagram of “Monster hoax by Sir Peter S.”  Scott’s co-author Robert Rines countered with the fact that the name was also an anagram of “Yes, both pix are monsters. R.”