"I chose this name because I am very impressed with the young activist's work and I wanted to pay tribute to her outstanding contribution to environmental issues," said Michael Darby, who discovered the small subpopal beetle. ptinidae among the 22 million specimens in the museum's collection.
"Nelloptodes gretae" is less than a millimeter long and has no eyes or wings. It was collected in the Nairobi soil in the 1960s, the museum said in a statement.
Max Barclay, head of the beetle collection, explained that hundreds of species still remain to be found in the museum's vast collection and around the world, some of which would disappear before being indexed due to the loss of the biodiversity.
"It is perfectly fitting that the most recent discovery be named after someone who struggled to defend the natural world and protect vulnerable species," said Max Barclay.