Taiwan: New species of snail named in celebration of same-sex marriage

Aaron Day October 13, 2014
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Researchers in Taiwan have taken an unprecedented step in naming a newly discovered species of snail in support of same-sex marriage laws.

The Guardian reports the snail species, dubbed Aegista Diversifamilia, was named to reflect the “diversity of sexual orientation in the animal kingdom.”

A marriage equality bill in Taiwan, proposed by opposition Democratic Progressive Party lawmakers, has been stalled by the Parliament’s judiciary committee since October last year.

However, there has a been recent upsurge of support for the legislation, after an estimated 20,000 people campaigned outside Parliamentary gates last week.

Dr Yen-Chang Lee, who co-authored the study published in Monday’s ZooKeys journal, said: “We decided that maybe this is a good occasion to name the snail to remember the struggle for the recognition of same-sex marriage rights,”

The snail, a land species endemic to Taiwan, was previously thought to be a member of the species Aegista subchinensis.

However, in 2003, Dr Lee noticed there was a difference in the eastern snail type compared to its western counterpart, with a larger and flatter shell.

Not the first time gay people have been compared to the hermaphrodite species, a former Danish government minister in 2012 equated gay rights with ‘killer snails’ plaguing the country.

Related topics: Asia, civil partnership, equal marriage, gay marriage, gay wedding, lesbian marriage, lesbian wedding, marriage, marriage ban, marriage equality, same sex marriage, Same-sex wedding, Taiwan, wedding

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