- The Loom
Tongue-Eating Fish Parasites Never Cease to Amaze
NOVA put together a video, embedded below, about one of those animals that you have to keep persuading yourself is real, a parasitic crustacean that lives inside the mouths of fishes, eating–and then taking the place of–its host’s tongue.
I can vouch for these beasts, having written about them off and on since I first encountered them in my research for Parasite Rex—most recently on the Loom last year. But I was not aware that it’s the female that wins the Oscar for best performance as a fish tongue. The males just hang out around the gills of the fish and then–yep–mate with the pseudo-tongue.
This discovery led me to wonder about the latest research about tongue-eating isopods. I