Friday’s Featured Organism: Colpocephalum californici

Colpocephalum californici

It's the one on the left, guys.

Parasites aren’t really widely appreciated, and they can be annoying or even dangerous to people and environment. Most of the times, however, they’re just part of a balanced ecosystem, and they fill an important role of population control and selective pressure on many species. Also, they’re living organisms, like all the other species: why, from a conservation point of view, a tiger that brutally kills animal to survive deserves appreciation and protection, and a louse that sucks a little blood to survive can die out and nobody cares? The California Condor, Gymnogyps californianus, was saved from extinction thanks to captive breeding and reintroduction but its louse, Colpocephalum californici, was lost forever. Think about it, folks.

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