Deadly Killer You’ve Never Seen #poem #poetry #ocean #evolution #plankton #marinebiology

“Little bugs have littler bugs
On their backs to bite ’em.
And littler bugs have littler bugs
And so on in ad infinitum.”

No! Only to a single cell,
Where there’s a fearsome hunter,
A dinoflagellate
That loves to eat its brothers.

It can harpoon or poison prey,
But that’s not all that’s weird.
It has an eye and wields a net
That planktons need to fear.

It takes a scanning electron microscopy
To see this tiny breed
An organic Gatling gun,
The littlest bug indeed.

By Kate Rauner

Thanks to for their article on plankton. The quoted lines are often attributed to Ogden Nash, though the exact wording seems to have changed over time. Read more of my science-inspired poetry today.


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