An Unexpected Endangered Species

Hello readers. Recently, I stumbled across an interesting Yahoo! science article on an endangered species. When we think of endangered species, we usually think of tigers, rhinos, elephants, and megafuana of that sort. But in this case, the endangered species turns out to be pubic lice, also known as crab lice.

I almost wanted to laugh out loud. But it turns out that this lice is becoming extinct due to many people using bikini waxes. Below is the word-by-word article from Yahoo.

Pubic lice have plagued mankind for thousands of years, but the itchy pests are now facing a enemy that threatens to wipe them out:bikini waxing.

Also known as crab lice, the tiny insects lay their eggs on pubic hair. But as Brazilian waxes and other hair-removal procedures become more common among men and women, the bugs’ breeding cycle is interrupted, and populations are now plunging as low as bikini briefs themselves.

“The ‘habitat destruction’ of the pubic lice is increasing and they are becoming an endangered species,” Janet Wilson, a consultant in sexual health, told Bloomberg News.

The main sexual health clinic in Sydney, Australia, hasn’t seen a woman with an infestation of pubic lice since 2008, reports Bloomberg, and cases among men have fallen 80 percent in the past decade.

A 2011 study published in the journal Sex Roles revealed that 80 percent of college-age men and women in the United States have removed some or all of their pubic hair.

The popularity of bikini waxing exploded after it was given exposure on television shows like “Sex and the City,” Bloomberg reports. Men are signing up for extensive hair-removal treatments like one called the “Sunga” that costs $90 and removes all pubic hair, including on the scrotum, according to the Daily Mail.

Pubic lice are a different species from head lice, and evidence suggests humans caught pubic lice from gorillas some 3 million years ago (no not from human-gorilla sex, but rather from sleeping in their nests or eating apes), according to a 2007 report detailed in the journal BMC Biology. Because a lice infestation is easily treated with insecticidal soaps, and because they don’t spread any diseases, public health organizations keep few records of infestation rates, Bloomberg reports.

Pubic Lice

After reading this, my question to you is: should we truly care about whether this species becomes extinct? I mean, it’s just lice that nobody likes. What’s the big deal if it is wiped out? However, if it is wiped out, than that means one less species that can contribute to the diversity of the animal kingdom. In a sense, this lice is important to the world in terms of zoology.

If society does deem it important to preserve pubic lice, than I don’t know how in the world public lice can be preserved. What, do we get dead bodies and let the public lice roam and manifest it? I dunno. But for now, I am pretty sure that there are much more other animals facing vast more issues than this crab lice.