Captain: "Ensign Miller! What is that green slime on my dashboard? I told you a dozen times to clean the air filters!" Ensign: "Uh, I, but..."
We don’t know what ensign Miller did wrong. However, we seriously doubt whether an ensign is sufficiently qualified to maintain the life support system of a spaceship. As every spacercaptain should know, the ship’s manual prescribes the replacement of the corresponding filters instead of a simple flushing anyway.
The scene, however, points to a particular problem of interstellar travel. When members of different biota meet, the consequences are unpredictable and dangerous.
Let us consider here some examples ranging from simple hayfever to lethal effects. First, here are some microbic parasites, leeches and body snatchers in close-up view:
Normally, parasites are a regular element of their home ecosystems. Nasty, but tolerable. Here, green leeches let themselves drop out of a tree onto an unwary animal passing by:
Weeks later, the same animal spits out the parasite's larvae. They will crawl up the next tree, thus completing the cycle:
Another example of infected skin:
Spacerpilot with swollen thyroid:
Deep-radar of an infected lymphatic system:
Parasitic growth in a lung:
Parasite eggs in a stomach, about to hatch:
Mummy of a completely dehydrated Spaceman, parasite still sitting on his shoulder:
Keep Your Spaceship Tidy!
JumpGate to Part XII of the galactic Zoo:
this is the final part of my Galactic Zoo. Phew! What started as a game with horrific faces, soon turned into the First Xenobiological Almanac ever! Almost like Brehm's Animal Life . I had to complete it! This chapter about life on other life fits as an end, not least because of its number 13 ("Bad luck, Spacercaptain!"), also because this is the month of Halloween. I hope You enjoyed it!
You may check out all the other parts by following the links named JumpGate right to the beginning. Please give me a heart emoji in Part I, when You get there!
P.S.: As you can see in the above texts, I discovered (by chance), that the writing in this forum may be formatted using HTML code. Maybe, experienced users find this tip helpful.