A new species of venomous snake has been named after METALLICA frontman James Hetfield.
Atheris hetfieldi was discovered by a team of metal-loving scientists led by Dr. Luis Ceriaco.
The species of African Bush Viper, which grows up to 52cm in length, lives at the base of a volcano on Bioko island in Equatorial Guinea and is characterised by “a triangular-shaped head and strongly-keeled scales, which gives them a dragon-like appearance, which certainly is consonant with the image of a singer of an Heavy Metal band.”
Both me and Mariana Marques, the second author of the paper, are big fans of METALLICA and James Hetfield since a very young age,” Ceriaco explains. “We wanted to honor him, as a thank you for all the good vibes his music has transmitted to us during all of our personal lives and careers.
“Also, we think that a mysterious venomous and cool looking snake, who lives in the base of a volcano lost in the middle of the tropical forest is very relatable to heavy metal!”, he added. “On another hand, naming a new species after someone as James brings more attention to the much needed biodiversity studies and field surveys. We are in race against the extinction of a large proportion of the world’s biodiversity, and many species may go extinct before we even know they exist!
METALLICA‘s live album, S&M2, the live concert film from METALLICA & The San Francisco Symphony is released today. You can grab your copy here.