What is the standard format?

Zoological names are written in a standard way so they can be easily recognised, avoiding confusion, and supporting the key aims of the ICZN to make the names of animals universal and stable.

For example, the scientific name for the honey bee species is Apis mellifera Linnaeus, 1758. The ‘binominal’ part of the name is in italics or some other distinguishing font or underline to indicate that this is the universal scientific name. The person who first described the species Apis mellifera in a published work was Linnaeus in 1758 and that he described it as a member of the genus Apis.

Honey bee, Apis mellifera Linnaeus, 1758. Image credit: M, M. Karim http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Apis_mellifera_flying.jpg.

Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith