Game of Thrones is a pop cultural phenomenon. People are so excited about the HBO series based on a series of books by author George R.R. Martin that its influence has crossed over into the real world.
In 2015, a warthog at the Detroit Zoo named Lilith gave birth to five piglets. Officials from the Detroit Zoological Society decided to name all five after Game of Thrones characters. The babies: Danenerys, Sansa, Cersei, Hodor, and Tyrion.
There are more than 150 girls in the U.S. named Khaleesi. That’s just one part of the trend of naming newborns after Game of Thrones characters (or their titles). In England, there are more than 50 Khaleesis, as well as 250 girls named Arya, after Arya Stark, portrayed on Game of Thrones by Maisie Williams.
A brand new species of sea slug was discovered off the coast of Brazil in 2013 by scientists from the Federal University of Ceará. The creature measures about 12 millimeters long, and has a thin white body. Part of its thorax is covered in a single white band. The scientists decided to name the slug Tritonia khalessi. (Khaleesi is a title conferred to Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) on Game of Thrones.) The slug was so named because the khaleesi often wears her hair in a long, silvery braid, similar to the thin white band on the slug’s thorax.
In 2014, a Spanish entomologist named Diego M. Barbosa led a team that identified six heretofore unknown species of wasps. Their species were named baratheoni, lannisteri, martelli, targarynei, tullyi, and starki. That’s six species, and all six of them named after a different family (or “house”) from Game of Thrones. Respectively, those houses are Baratheon, Lannister, Martell, Targaryen, Tully, and Stark.