eniteris OP t1_jc2nhwt wrote

I think that a lot of the framing is being lifted from the bacterial endosymbionts of insects, which can also cause male killing. The bacteria is only transferred through the egg, so killing males doesn't harm the bacteria (and may benefit if the females have more resources due to the lack of males).

(these bacteria can also help the insect gain various other benefits)

But as a virus, this explanation doesn't make as much sense (since it should be easier to transfer in the sperm than a whole bacteria), and to my knowledge no benefits have yet been observed. But it's borrowing from the same framework, so I think that's why they called it a symbiont.

edit: Also technically speaking, symbiote refers to any long-term close interaction. Mutualistic symbiosis is the classic codependent relationship, but you also have commensal and parasitic symbiotic relationships as well.


eniteris t1_j9k0mli wrote

This study shows association, not causation.

Also their participant group is specifically overweight/obese young adults. Would be interesting to see obesity vs. PFAS blood concentrations, since processed food packaging seems to contain PFAS.


eniteris t1_isflmvd wrote

There's another species of eel in Britain, but yes, jellied eels are mostly made from silver eels, and they're critically endangered.

The European Eel/glass eel/yellow eel/silver eel migrates between fresh and saltwater.


eniteris t1_iseldei wrote

Barnacle geese were thought to come from barnacles because they breed in the Arctic in the summer, so nobody saw any eggs.

Also so they could be considered fish and eaten on Fridays.


eniteris t1_iseinhz wrote

This is pretty big for the European Eel, since it has a long history of confusing humans on how it lives.

Europeans never saw any juvenile eels, or eels spawning, or eel eggs, so they thought they came from earthworms, or spontaneously generated. Eventually it was discovered that eel larvae in the oceans were not a separate species, and in fact transitioned from larva to "glass eels", then to "yellow eels", and finally "silver eels" when they return to the ocean from the continent.

Silver eels also don't have a digestive system and migrate on stored energy alone.