Political conservationistshave been fighting for years to save the endangered creature (Latin name: Politicus ineptus) from dying out in its traditional habitats of university towns and the West Country. The few remaining individuals are all thought to be in captivity in a coalition in Westminster.
‘Less than two years ago the population was perfectly healthy,’ explained Professor Benton Fimber of the IUCN. ‘Their exponential decline can be explained by a genetic mutation in several prominent Lib Dems recorded in May 2010. The mutation proved to be the foundation for a symbiotic relationship with the Conservative species, Nastius partius Cameronensi.’
Fimber said: ‘It appears that these lesser spotted Liberal Democrats entered the relationship expecting to benefit from the experience of power, but they contracted other traits characteristic of their partners, such as infighting and general incompetence. When confronted by the new hybrid species, traditional Lib Dems unaffected by the mutation, seem to have topped themselves.’
Chinese conservationists have offered to take a breeding Lib Dem pair to Beijing Zoo. ‘They are a species most Chinese have never heard of,’ admitted an official. ‘But they possess traits of great interest to the Chinese people, especially their docile nature and inability to challenge authority’. Back at the IUCN, claims that the species will be extinct by the end of the current parliament have been greeted with indifference. ‘What do you want us to do?’ asked a spokesman. ‘No one else gives a toss, so why should we?’