Despicable Species: On Cowbirds, Kudzu, Hornworms, and Other Scourges

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Globe Pequot Press, 2001 - Nature - 216 pages
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In fourteen glorious essays, Despicable Species ponders some of the most loathsome creatures on the planet. But for every nasty reputation, there is a silver lining, which Lembke brings to our attention with dazzling bits of history, science, and culture. Lembke describes the horse fly as a blood-sucking insect with a walloping sting whose maggots exude chemicals that aid in healing human tissue, and that famous infant abandoner the cow-bird. She also writes about the hornworm, the opossum, and the deadly microbe Pfiesteria piscicida. And finally, she reveals our very own despicable species: Homo sapiens.

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Pfiesteria piscicida

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About the author (2001)

Janet Lembke is the author of "Shake Them 'Simmons Down", "Skinny Dipping", "Dangerous Birds", "River Time", & "Looking for Eagles", & is a translator of Greek & Latin classics. She divides her time between Staunton, Virginia, & her home in North Carolina on the banks of her beloved Lower Neuse River.

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