Strigiphilus garylarsoni

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Strigiphilus garylarsoni
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Phthiraptera
Suborder: Ischnocera
Family: Philopteridae
Genus: Strigiphilus
Species: S. garylarsoni
Binomial name
Strigiphilus garylarsoni
Clayton, 1989

Strigiphilus garylarsoni is a species of chewing louse found only on owls. The species has no common name.

The species was first described by biologist Dale H. Clayton in 1989. It was named after Gary Larson, creator of the syndicated cartoon The Far Side. In a letter to Larson, Clayton praised the cartoonist for "the enormous contribution that my colleagues and I feel you have made to biology through your cartoons." In his book The Prehistory of the Far Side, Larson stated, "I considered this an extreme honor. Besides, I knew no one was going to write and ask to name a new species of swan after me. You have to grab these opportunities when they come along."[1]

The louse was placed in one of Larson's cartoons as wallpaper to a comic. Clayton counted the individual garylarsoni on the wallpaper and counted 127. This cartoon was published in one of Larson's books which sold 1 million copies. It was then calculated to have been printed 127 million times. This is believed to be the most printed biological organism.

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