The Dark Side’s new weapon: Ricinus vaderi

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“You don’t know the power of the Dark Side.” Apparently, a new species of chewing louse didn’t know either and thus succumbed to the temptation. Scientists Miroslav Valan, Oldrich Sychra and Ivan Literak, while revising “a collection of chewing lice deposited at the Zoological Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Saint Petersburg, Russia” (from the journal Parasite), named one of the new species, Ricinus vaderi Valen, after Darth Vader. It appears that the head of the insect resembles Darth Vader’s helmet (Entomology Today). This louse, which is described in the journal Parasiteis a member of the largest genus of chewing lice, Ricinus, which parasitizes perching birds. I’m not sure how the Empire is using their latest ally, but one can imagine only dastardly deeds being perpetrated through the perching bird population! I laughed when I saw this and hope this news post made you smile too! Happy Friday!

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