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Oestrid flies: eradication and extinction versus biodiversity

Colwell, D.D., Otranto, D., Stevens, J.R. (2009). Oestrid flies: eradication and extinction versus biodiversity, 25(11), 500-504.


Larvae of oestrid flies are obligate parasites of mammals. This article focuses on two potential drivers that could be forcing these flies into extinction: (i) the highly effective and widespread use of anti-parasitic drugs for domestic livestock; and (ii) the co-extinction of oestrids associated with non-domestic hosts that are endangered. Other oestrid species could be the victims of benign neglect in that they are so poorly studied that their disappearance might go unnoticed. In addition, we explore current knowledge in each of these categories of vulnerability for oestrids, and address the potential impacts of their disappearance. Finally, we examine the potential consequences of eradicating a group of livestock parasites, and ask what possibilities for improvement of the health of humans and animals might also be lost. © 2009.

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