The tongue-eating louse is an absolutely monstrous parasite that eats and replaces a fish's tongue. This of course poses a problem for mermaids; if these things evolved to do that for fish, why not mermaids? I think it goes without saying that this would be a pretty traumatic experience, and if this is possible, I want to do everything in my power to avoid it.
Therefore, my question is simple: In a world where mermaids exist, would tongue-eating lice evolve to parasitize them?
Specifications for best answer:
- The best answer will account for the fact that these lice, being parasites, will most likely evolve alongside mermaids while determining the feasibility of this sinister scenario, including the fact that mermaids, having human-level intelligence, will likely develop countermeasures if this would be a problem.