- , GUPPY SUBMARINER. J. Lechmere Guppy (1836-1916), president of the Scientific Association of Trinidad, lends his name to a little tropical fish he discovered that has been the delight of children and adults alike ever since. In 1868 he presented specimens to the British Museum, which put them on display. Almost immediately, the guppy, which was named Gerardinus guppy after him but later renamed Poecilis reticulate, became a favorite for public and home aquariums throughout the world, and still are one of the best-known and most popular small tropical fish. The male guppy is seldom longer than two inches, about one-half the length of the female. But unlike the female, the male is very brilliantly spotted and streaked with rainbow colors. The female is a slow-moving, grayish-green fish.The guppy is native to Venezuela, Trinidad, and neighboring regions.They have been imported to other areas because they are mosquitolarvae eaters, and so help reduce the incidence of malaria. In World War II a small submarine was developed that was twice as fast as the older styles and more maneuverable. Appropriately, these midget submarines were called guppies. But in this instance the name was an acronym for "greater underwater propulsion power."
Dictionary of eponyms. Morton S. Freeman. 2013.