One day the main characters find a pest in their home or workplace. However, just as one of them are about shoo it away or, if one of them aren't so merciful, exterminate it, a government official shows up telling them that the animal is endangered and thus killing it or even evicting it would constitute a crime.
Now the characters have to deal with an annoying and troublesome pest that they just can't get rid of or even possibly have to actively ensure its safety and well being.
Related to this is the White Elephant
, in a which a bothersome or simply unwanted gift is received.
- The Simpsons once featured the Screamapillar in the early portion in one episode. It is a caterpillar that screams with great intensity despite its size, sexually attracted to fire, and needs constant reassurance or it would die. Typical of Homer, he nearly kills the creature and results in him and Marge doing community service.
- In Family Guy, Peter once grew a beard and somehow had a bird of an endangered species make a nest in it. It caused a bit of trouble for him when he went to watch a film at a movie theater.
- This happens with the panda that takes up residence in the magazine offices, and makes a habit out of attacking Brent, in PvP.
- On the TV series of Tremors, El Blanco is considered an endangered species. The locals have to put up with his periodic and dangerous passes through town, as his presence is the only reason why Melvin doesn't bulldoze the sleepy community to put up condos.