Wizard-hat amoeba gets named after Gandalf—Ben Coxworth, New Atlas
As far as most laypeople know, all amoebas are soft-bodied creatures – sort of like microscopic versions of The Blob. In fact, though, amoebas of the Thecamoeba genus have a hard outer carapace. In the case of a recently-described new species of Thecamoeba, that shell resembles the wizard’s hat worn by Gandalf in The Lord of the Rings. It’s only fitting, therefore, that the microorganism has been named Arcella gandalfi.