is a species of trapdoor spider
named after the American satirist Stephen Colbert
. The spider was discovered on the California
coastline in 2007.
is found on coastal dunes that extend from the Big Sur
area to the San Francisco
peninsula at Point Lobos
and Golden Gate
. Compared to closely-related species such as Aptostichus angelinajoleae
(named after Angelina Jolie
), Aptostichus stephencolberti
is lighter in color. The male holotype and the female paratype both have brownish yellow legs, carapace
, while the abdomen
is lighter with dusky stripes. The male has six teeth, while the female has five.
The spider was named after Colbert after he reported on his television series The Colbert Report
that Jason Bond
, a professor of biology at East Carolina University
, named a different species of spider Myrmekiaphila neilyoungi
, after the Canadian
rock star Neil Young
, who is known for his left wing
political views. Colbert, who portrays a character
who is right wing
, was angered by the fact that Bond had not named a spider after him, and began to appeal for a species of animal to be named after him. He claimed that he already had an eagle and a turtle named after him, so there was no reason that another animal could not be named after him as well.
On a later edition of The Colbert Report, Colbert revealed that Bond would name a spider after him, with Colbert claiming, "And all I had to do was shamelessly beg on national television." The two men talked on the telephone to decide which spider should be the one to be so named, but as there were 27 different species of spider available, Bond was left to make the final choice.
The name Aptostichus stephencolberti was officially announced as the spider named after Colbert on The Colbert Report on August 6, 2008. Because Colbert pronounces his surname with a silent "T", the last "T" in stephencolberti is also silent.