"Lampreys don't charm most people," begins a pamphlet from the Minnesota Sea Grant.
Truer words, my environmental research friends, truer words.
Yes, it's hard out there for a lamprey. Already cursed with a face not even their mothers (who die shortly after spawning) could love, these fish were further saddled with 50 years of bad PR brought on when one invasive species, the sea lamprey, moved into the Great Lakes and wreaked a trail of parasitic havoc from New York to Minnesota. Lost in the shuffle were several native lamprey species, some of which aren't even parasitic. Despite living in the Great Lakes for 1000s of years in co-evolved cooperation with other fish, non-invasive lamprey have paid the price for their cousin's misdeeds.
remember lamprey boy frolm x-files - great episode