The enemy within

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I recently received this image in an email exclaiming how cute it was that the leopard didn’t eat the rodent stealing its snack. How sweet that two natural enemies can live together, why can’t we learn to as well.

Call me odd, but all I could see was a rodent that’s probably under the influence of a rather nasty parasite.

Toxoplasma gondii is a common parasite thats lifecycle required that it pass through the digestive system of a cat.  The best way to do that is to hop on board a cat’s favourite food and steer it into the path of the nearest feline.  You heard correctly the parasite overrides a rodent natural fear response to cats so they are more likely to seek out areas where cats frequent.

What’s more interesting is that at least 50% of humans are also infected by Toxoplasma.  So, next time some one blames you for doing something odd you can just tell them to talk to the parasites, they’re the ones now in charge.

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