Colpocephalum californici Price & Beer, 1963

Condor louse



Taxonomy & Nomenclature



Conservation Status


Last record: 1980's?


A species of louse formerly restricted to the Californian condor. It is believed to have gone extinct when the last individuals of the Californian condor were brought into captivity and treated for louse in the 1980's. However, it is not known for certain whether the two individual Californian condors which had louse on them were of this species. Hence the species could have gone extinct in the 1970's.



California, USA


Biology & Ecology










Original scientific description:

Price, Roger D. F. and Beer, James R. (1963). Species of Colpocephalum (Mallophaga: Menoponidae) parasitic upon the Falconiformes. Canadian Entomologist 95(7): 731-763.


Other references:

Dunn, Robert R. (2009). Coextinction: anecdotes, models, and speculation, pp. 167-180. In: Turvey, Samuel T. (ed.). Holocene Extinctions. Oxford, UK & New York, USA: Oxford University Press. xii + 352 pp.

Holmes, Branden. (2021). What's Lost and What Remains: The Sixth Extinction in 100 Accounts (eBook). Self published.

Lymbery, Alan J. and Smit, Nico J. (2023). Conservation of parasites: A primer. International Journal for Parasitology: Parasites and Wildlife 21: 255-263.

Rózsa, L. and Vas, Z. (2015). Co-extinct and critically co-endangered species of parasitic lice, and conservation-induced extinction: should lice be reintroduced to their hosts? Oryx 49(1): 107-110.


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