February 20, 2020
What's a deer ked? It isn't a new line of shoes for wildlife; in fact, it's a blood-sucking parasite that resembles a tick, but it is actually a type of fly. Upon finding a suitable host, the fly tears its wings off and it spends the rest of its life on the host. A paper concerning the very first records of the neotropical deer ked Lipoptena mazamae was just published in Banisteria, the official publication of the Virginia Natural History Society. The paper was written by VMNH Research Technician Liberty Hightower; Curator of Mammalogy Dr. Nancy Moncrief; and Associate Curator of Invertebrate Zoology Dr. Kal Ivanov.