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Only Fatal to Adults

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So the Depopulation Bomb has dropped, usually in the form of a highly selective virus or bacteria that is only fatal for adults, leaving the kids to inherit the world. Frequently seen in After the End fiction, Only Fatal to Adults has two variations: In the first, death strikes at the onset of puberty, killing only the sexually mature. In the second, the highly selective agent of the Depopulation Bomb kills in the late teens or in early adulthood, killing only the socially mature.

Another important distinction is whether the Depopulation Bomb is only a concern that one time, or if it will begin to affect the kids when they grow up.

Due to the difficulty in convincingly presenting a hypothetical weapon with such specific depopulation capabilities (especially if in the second form, where the bomb seems able to detect a set of legal and social traditions that are only very loosely connected to biological changes), a popular form of this is to have a non-discriminating apocalypse wipe out mankind in general, then re-populate the planet, say, sixteen years later, with a bunch of infants who were locked away in a survival shelter at the time.

If the Depopulation Bomb is Only Fatal to Adults, then this trope justifies Parental Abandonment. It also justifies storylines in which children and teens have to take on the responsibilities of adults, or form extended families of their own in order to survive. Can also justify Teens Are Monsters if teens survive and are left to fend for themselves. In some variations, due to the ages of the characters and the intended audience, guns are rare and the Nerf Arm is ubiquitous. Sometimes, there are even lasers. Will eventually lead to There Are No Adults.

This will pretty much always lead to a Teenage Wasteland. Compare Gendercide. Also see Improbable Infant Survival and World of No Grandparents.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Downplayed in Death Note. One of the rules of the titular object is that it cannot be used to kill people under 780 days old (a little over two years old). This means that children above that age are fair game, however.
  • The disease from Ochazuke Nori's "Infection on Flight 999". It starts with a high fever, intense pain, and blueness in the face. In anyone over ten, this is followed shortly by the head swelling up and exploding. For those under ten, it's highly unpleasant, but at least not immediately fatal. (The symptoms are nasty, and we don't find out what happens to kids long-term.) The ending raises concerns about it rendering humanity extinct.

    Comic Books 
  • The DCU miniseries World Without Grownups had all the adults spontaneously disappear from the face of the earth. Robin, Superboy, and Impulse had to get everything together if humanity was to be saved, leading directly to their formation of Young Justice.
    • Naturally, the DC Animated Universe provided its own spin in the Justice League episode "Kid Stuff", in which Mordred banishes all the adults from Earth, and Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and Green Lantern have to get turned into preteens to go back and stop him.
  • In the Pre-Crisis Earth-1 Superman continuity, Superman's adoptive parents, Jonathan and Martha Kent, died after contracting a virus that only affected adults. Superman was still Superboy at the time, so the virus did not affect him. Several years later, Lois Lane and Lana Lang contract the same virus and almost die before the now-adult Superman realizes that the virus entered his body as well, and his body created antibodies to counteract it.
  • "Kids Rule OK", a strip in the '70s British comic Action. The vast majority of adults die, leaving only rampaging gangs of kids that start to beat seven kinds of crap out of each other... until the comic fell foul of Moral Guardians and they all make peace after being given a stern talking-to.
  • One Hellblazer mini-arc features John Constantine's niece being enlisted to travel to an island where a group of vampire children, all under the age of 13, attack any adults who come near the island but don't harm other children.
  • The Green Lantern story that introduced Guy Gardner established that he was another potential candidate for inheriting Abin Sur's ring and that Hal Jordan ended up chosen to succeed Abin Sur due to being closer to the area where Abin Sur crashed, with Jordan being shown a simulation of what might have happened if Guy Gardner succeeded Abin Sur as Green Lantern of Sector 2814 instead of Hal Jordan. Guy Gardner's career as Green Lantern ultimately comes to an end when he visits a planet inhabited by children who keep themselves occupied by building robots for warfare after the adult population was wiped out by a yellow plague. After Guy convinces the children to cease their battles and live a more peaceful existence, he returns to Earth to find that he has contracted the yellow plague and must choose someone to succeed him before the plague kills him, resulting in Hal Jordan becoming a Green Lantern in this timeline anyway.

    Fan Works 
  • This kind of thing seems to happen once a week in the universe of premier Marissa Picard, where Stephen Ratliff uses this kind of stuff to justify regularly allowing his Kids Crew protagonists to have command of starships, starbases, entire systems, etc... One story in particular had a group of hijackers use a sleeping gas that only affected adults for no apparent reason beyond this.
  • Eiga Sentai Scanranger had a Monster of the Week armed with poison that dehydrates anyone who touches it/drinks it, but only if they're over 25. It's unclear why that was brought up when what wasn't brought up was what the villains hoped to accomplish. The poison would only work on one of the six rangers, for crying out loud.
  • In Day of the Barney everyone over the age of thirteen disappears. And by "disappears", I mean Barney brainwashes all the younger children to slaughter them en masse before joining their purple friend in happy fun-fun time forever. And when they reach the age of thirteen, they get to go on a vacation...
  • A plague of this nature takes out nearly all the adult Smurfs in Papa Smurf's generation, leaving him as the only parent figure of a hundred young Smurfs in Empath: The Luckiest Smurf.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The 1970 Roger Corman cult film Gas-s-s-s, where an industrial accident releases a poison gas that kills everyone on earth over the age of 25. In the rest of the film, the main characters have to learn to survive on their own. The concept is laden with Fridge Logic: the gas was designed for use in The Vietnam War, but the average age of a soldier in 'Nam was 19. Maybe it just didn't work right?
  • Inverted in Clive Barker's The Plague, in which every child on Earth under the age of nine suddenly falls into a coma, and every baby born in the next ten years is also born comatose.
  • Night of the Comet has elements of this. The survivors are teens because the few people we see who were properly shielded just happened to be in that age group, while nearly the whole planetary population were out watching the sky. Probably some adults survived aboard submarines and other suitable places. One wonders about the other side of the planet.
  • This is apparently the background story for MST3K veteran City Limits, set in a post-apocalyptic Teenage Wasteland. James Earl Jones escaped the effect because, well, James Earl Jones!
  • Riot Girls: The pandemic only killed adults, leaving everyone else.

  • In the novel Worlds Apart by Joe Haldeman (second book of his Worlds trilogy), Earth has been devastated by the second type. He ties the disease to when the body reduces production of human growth hormone. So there are some adults around because they suffer from acromegaly, a disease where adults produce too much human growth hormone.
  • This was the premise for Shade's Children by Garth Nix. Except here the world is run by evil overlords who chop up anyone over 14 for body parts. When they took over, though, everyone over 14 instantly disappeared and beyond this being the fault of the overlords it's never completely explained.
  • In The Subtle Knife, the second book of the His Dark Materials trilogy, there's a world in which there are soul-eating 'spectres' that only target adults. At one point the heroes are in a city only occupied by children, although it turns out that most of the adults left, rather than being caught by the spectres, and will return once the spectres move on.
  • The plot of the Blake and Mortimer book The Voronov Plot revolved around a virus recovered by a KGB scientist from a crashed Soviet satellite which was only lethal to adults. The scientist, Dr. Voronov, a Stalin admirer, planned to use the virus to overthrow the Soviet Union and conquer the West. Late in the book, he starts using the virus in a particularly despicable fashion: he acquires a network of contacts in the West all with small children who are injected with the virus. Afterwards, the parents send the infected children near key political figures who under their orders, innocently ask them if they can kiss them on the cheek. Not suspecting an innocent child, they accept... Only to die a few hours later.
  • The children's book The Girl Who Owned a City. The set 'death age' here was twelve, and most of the adults knew about it before they died.
  • This is most of the plot of The Fire-Us Trilogy. A band of young children are living on their own, but eventually find a group of religious zealots who go so far as to name themselves after various religious passages.
    • In fact, it turns out that the zealots are responsible for the virus, so as to more easily find the Second Coming.
    • The kids also find a group of elderly women in a retirement home, who survived only because post-menopausal women were the only adults that weren't affected by the virus.
    • The story also deconstructs the trope: without adults to take care of them, many children end up dying from starvation, accidents, disease, or wild animals.
  • An interesting variation: In Larry Niven's A World Out of Time, only pre-adolescents can use the immortality treatment and cease aging, while those who pass puberty become immune to the treatment and age and die normally. Rediscovering an immortality treatment usable by adults and breaking the status quo of the immortal children's hegemony forms a large part of the book's second half.
  • In David Weber's Honor Harrington, people can get a treatment that will double or triple their lifespans, but only while they're still young. There are three levels of effectiveness. First-generation Prolong can be performed as late as 25. Second-generation treatment is only effective into the early teens, but gains a century or so more; Third-generation, it is implied, will extend life even more effectively (it's very new, so the first people to get it haven't grown old yet), but requires genetic manipulation even before the recipient's birth.
    • Availability of Prolong is the single biggest quality of life difference between various worlds. For instance, it becomes a plot point that the Kingdom of Manticore is welcomed in an area they annex simply because Prolong had not previously been available there, save to the very rich, but the Manticoran public health system guarantees it to all.
  • The post-apocalyptic young adult novel series Countdown began with the release of a deadly virus that somehow turned everyone but young adults into black goo.
  • Inverted in the Left Behind series - in addition to righteous people in general, all children under an unspecified age are Caught Up in the Rapture. Presumably this would be justified by means of Children Are Innocent.
    • Except that any denomination that believes in the original sin sees babies as inherently sinful.
      • Except that many denominations that believe in original sin also believe in the Age of Accountability, which denotes the age at which a person becomes mature enough to be held responsible by God for his or her sins.
  • The premise of the book series Gone. All people over the age of 15 disappear one day, and continue to disappear throughout the book, i.e once one turns 15, they vanish. At the end of the first book, Sam and Caine figure out how to avoid disappearing. They later tell the other kids, giving them a choice of staying in the FAYZ or "stepping out" when they turn 15.
  • Only Fatal to Adults is combined with Gendercide in the backstory to George R. R. Martin's first novel Dying of the Light. Part of what has shaped the Kavalan culture is a biological weapon that kills any sexually mature woman.
  • In the novel Idlewild by Nick Sagan (Carl Sagan's son) a group of teens live in a virtual boarding school. It turns out that every human on Earth was wiped out by a disease. The kids were genetically engineered to be immune to the disease, and just before the end of civilization were placed in vaults and connected to a virtual world to be raised. Through the course of their virtual lives, they are educated and trained in professions that will help them rebuild society. They were aware that the boarding school that they attended was virtual, but didn't know that the rest of their lives were also virtual. Needless to say, it comes as a shock that everywhere they've ever been and everyone that they've ever known, their families and friends (except the few that attend their school), are all simulations.
  • In Lord of the Flies the plane crash in the beginning kills all of the adults on board leaving the children to fend for themselves.
  • In Chris Adrian's book The Children's Hospital, all the adults except Ishmael die of the strange dust disease; protagonist Jemma is the last to die, and dies as Ishmael leads the now-awake children out of the hospital and onto the new world.
  • The Reapers trilogy by Andrew Butcher relies on this trope: everyone over 18 dies of the mysterious Sickness, leaving the protagonists to fend for themselves. It turns out it was a bunch of alien invaders who want to take Earth's children as slaves.
  • Donaya Haymond's Waking Echoes has The Famine Fever, which is Only Fatal To Adults And Children, sparing the adolescents alone. This is because the Creator God of the dimension did it as a Biblical-style scourge. The adults could be judged by their deeds and the children were innocent, but the youths required further testing.
  • The Gentleman Bastard series has Black Whisper, a plague that typically gives anyone who hasn't entered puberty a case of the sniffles and everyone who's entered or completed it a case of screaming death. An outbreak in one particular district is what makes protagonist Locke Lamora an orphan at a young age.
  • The disease that plagues Rhine's generation in The Chemical Garden Trilogy. The women all die at age twenty, and the men all die at age twenty-five.
  • The Young Adult novel Starters, by Lissa Price, is set in a post-war dystopia where only the very old and the very young survive. The young can temporarily 'rent out' their bodies so the elderly can enjoy a virtual youth.
  • "The Underdweller" by William F. Nolan has the world populated by children because aliens massacred all the adults to break the continuity of human civilization without actually destroying the species, or so the protagonist theorizes. He survived because he was in a sewer tunnel where the rays didn't reach.
  • In the Biblical Book of Exodus, only those under 20 make it to the Promised Land. Those who are older than 20 were wiped out by various means as a result of their complaining...and the fact that they were a Ragtag Bunch of Misfits wandering around the desert for 40 years. Even Moses doesn't make it in.
  • Neptune's Children by Bonnie Dobkin is this, with the kids trapped in an amusement park.
  • Inverted by the RM virus in Partials: all new babies die of it within days. At the beginning of the novel, the youngest living human is graduating from school.
  • The Star Trek novel The Three Minute Universe features a race called Sackers, who require uncomfortably or even fatally hot environments to survive in, though younger ones can stay alive in cooler temperatures. As a result, when the environmental controls fail on the Sacker ship, the adults are all killed and their young are left to run the ship and carry out their plan.
  • In Supernova Era by Cixin Liu, radiation sickness caused by a nearby supernova slowly kills off everyone over the age of 13, leaving behind a world governed by children.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Star Trek: The Original Series has a planet that is an exact duplicate of Earth (amazing!) in the episode "Miri", on which the only survivors of a mysterious plague are a band of savage children. Their childhoods last centuries, but they are doomed to die at the onset of puberty. It eventually is revealed to be the result of a flawed life-prolongation project that got loose — ageing is indeed slowed (hence the centuries-long childhood of the survivors), but something goes wrong after puberty, causing madness and death.
  • The Star Trek: Enterprise episode "Terra Nova" has the crew going to humanity's first colony outside our solar system to determine why contact was lost several decades earlier. It was discovered that a radioactive asteroid hit the planet and all the adults died from the radiation. The children developed an immunity to it and survived by living in nearby caves.
  • Jeremiah takes place fifteen years after a plague wiped out anyone over puberty. It's later revealed that the plague was a synthetic bioweapon which was designed this way as a "mercy weapon", to kill anyone in the targeted area old enough to fight back, but "sparing" the children whose parents you just killed. It got out of control and destroyed the world.
  • The Tribe has this as its backstory: a mysterious virus kills basically everyone over 18 or 21 and the kids and teens are left to fend for themselves. The show was half teen soap and half Cozy Catastrophe, and there were even lasers with stun settings. All it was missing was that A Clockwork Orange element of graphic, violent, badassness to make it realistic and gritty, but it tried.
  • The premise of the Canadian series 2030 CE is that, since 2002, no one has lived past the age of 30, due to something called Progressive Ageing Syndrome.
  • The Stargate Atlantis episode "Childhood's End" (unrelated to the Arthur C. Clarke novel) involved a village where everyone committed ritual suicide after reaching a certain age because they thought it was required to protect them from the Wraith. In truth, the Ancients set up an EMP field that incapacitated any technology straying into it and if the population grows too large, they will leave the field and get culled. Hence the suicides.
  • Japanese TV series Bokura No Yuuki, is a Lord of the Flies reminiscent story of the latter case, where a microbe kills anyone 20 and older. They fortunately came up with convincing enough sounding Applied Phlebotinum to justify it.
  • The world of 2030 CE is plagued with Progressive Aging Syndrome, a disease that causes rapid aging and eventually death by a person's 30th Birthday.
  • An episode of Andromeda centered around a Lost Colony of Commonwealth children, who, due to years of Voltarium exposure, would cause them to die by adulthood. It's not so much only fatal to adults so much as 20 years of radiation exposure with no radiation treatments kills you.
  • An episode of Farscape centers around Chiana running off after hearing of the death of her brother to join a group of children who either jump to their death in a sort of trial (which is usually timed to coincide with the birth of a baby) or die of long-term radiation exposure. Crichton figures out that the caves they live in magnify the radiation exposure so they can live normal lives if they move to the surface.
  • The series The Sparticle Mystery has this as its premise. Everyone over the age of fifteen mysteriously disappears. It is later found out that all of the adults were transported to another clone dimension.
  • In the New Zealand series The Cul De Sac every adult disappears for unknown reasons. At the end of the first season it is found out that the kids were "taken" to a copy of their world for unknown reasons.
  • Inverted in Star Trek: Picard. The Borg and the Changelings have altered the transporters so that a part of Picard's Borg-altered DNA is implanted into everyone who goes through them. As they use a certain part of the brain that stops growing at age 25, the elder people going through them wouldn't be affected, but the younger ensigns and the like would, being assimilated once a signal is sent.

    Tabletop Games 
  • The Carbon Plague in Cybergeneration uses this trope. At first, everyone who catches it dies. First kids start surviving it, then adults do. Some of the kids that survive it come out a little different. It's much less of a Depopulation Bomb than other instances of the trope. The death toll is around 5% of the world's population. Possibly a subversion: fear over the Carbon Plague allows the U.S. Mega Corps to found the Incorporated States of America and children are now demonized and feared with less political power or autonomy than before. Of course, the ability to turn your arms into guns might be a relevant tradeoff there.
  • In Bliss Stage, the Bliss only affects humans who are eighteen years or older. This means that everyone under eighteen is safe, but only until their eighteenth birthday...
  • The Dark Eldar in Warhammer 40,000 got started when the birth of a new Chaos God turned out like this. Mix with Teens Are Monsters and serve for ten thousand horrifying years.
  • The Vitusdance in Engel killed off every adult in the world. And it happened more than once. No wonder that centuries from now Earth has managed to rebuild itself into a feudal-level society.
  • Non-plague example: In the domain of Odaire in Ravenloft, the living puppet Maligno murdered all the adults except his creator, leaving the children to fend for themselves.
  • The Plague in KidWorld only kills adults or, failing that, renders them blind. Everyone in the world still carries it though, so the eyesight of a teenager will get progressively worse as he/she grows up until it is lost altogether.
  • The Miry Virus in D20 Apocalypse. It often bypasses children altogether (having a saving throw DC of 5 + target's age).

    Video Games 
  • Control: After getting the Black Rock Prism and while giving Jesse some answers, Marshall tries to justify kidnapping Dylan by stating that all adults in Ordinary had vanished by the time FBC arrived.
  • One event in Dragon Vale has all of the adult wizards and witches turned to stone thanks to unpredictable energy floating up from the Surface. Downplayed in that they're still alive like this. At any rate, it's up to you and the young folk to find new dragons who can harness this energy to reverse the effects of the wayward forces.
  • A somewhat more indirect version explains the existence of Little Lamplight in Fallout 3. The kids were on a field trip when the bombs fell, the adults all died searching the wastes, and the Vault 87 dwellers wouldn't let the kids in thereby sparing them from being turned into Super Mutants by Vault-Tec's evil experiments, but the kids don't know that. The kids' distaste for adults became tradition; any Lamplighter who turns 16 gets forced out and sent across the Wastes to "Big Town", which considering the state of the place at least until the player shows up is effectively this trope.
    • Reading some of those diary entries, it was hard not to see something a bit more sinister in the way those kids were treated.
    • The design document for Vault 29 in the canceled Van Buren plays with this trope — families were selected for the Vault, but everyone older than 15 was either turned away or redirected to another Vault in the chaos. A sentient supercomputer was to raise the kids.
  • In Final Fantasy VI, Kefka's death ray claims everyone over 18 in Mobliz. There is no evidence that any children died with them. It's unclear whether this was coincidence, Kefka messing with them, or some kind of Heroic Sacrifice on the part of the adults.
  • Nintendo Wars: Inverted in Advance Wars: Days of Ruin. The Creeper only infects people under the age of 20/21 (at first).
  • In games in The Sims series, toddlers can't die, and children can rarely die. Teens and older can starve to death, however, if a child or toddler gets too hungry they will be taken away by Sims Social Services. This child can then be adopted into a different household.
  • In Terranigma, the Asmodeus virus wipes out everyone in the city it gets deployed in except for one little girl. It's unclear if she was the only child in the city or ended up being somehow immune to the virus.
  • During a side-event in Tales of Symphonia, Genis's older sister Raine is discovered to have contracted an illness called the Ozette Flu, which Genis openly states is fatal if contracted in adulthood. This requires Genis and Mithos to climb to the top of a mountain to get a flower able to cure it.
  • At the beginning of Yoshi's Story. Baby Bowser transforms Yoshi's Island into a figure book, and all the Yoshis become zombie-like (not dangerous, just zoned out and miserable). The only ones that weren't affected were a couple of Yoshi eggs that later hatched and took on Baby Bowser.

  • In Tales of the Questor, an ancient elf king wished for eternal youth for his people. He got it: Elves now die around age 20 ("Just old enough to make more elves") - which more or less caused the collapse of their society and left the survivors living as thieves and scavengers.
    • Also, there have been references to "the Crimson Plague" or "the Scarlet Plague," which according to Word of God decimated the Racconan population on at least two occasions, killing the very old and very young—- the main reason that, despite being a long-lived race, the current population of Antillia has very few extremely old Racconans and very few families with multiple children...

    Web Original 
  • Lost Boys of the Cascades is a web-published story about children struggling to survive after a pandemic killed all the adults.

    Western Animation 
  • A Lighter and Softer variation happens in Lloyd in Space, where a space cloud merely paralyses adults rather than kills them, while kids and teens are unaffected.
  • Played with in Young Justice (2010): five powerful magic users cast a spell that makes every adult on the planet disappear. However, halfway through the episode, it's revealed that they actually split the world across two dimensions — from the adults' perspective, every child in the world under 18 just vanished. Meanwhile, Captain Marvel (who can switch from a kid to an adult) shifts between worlds when he transforms, coordinating the effort to fuse the worlds back into one. Notably, the kids' dimension is portrayed as fairly stable, with the older kids looking after the younger ones and waiting patiently for the heroes to save the day. The adults' dimension suffers widespread rioting and panic, though some of this was made worse by the Light's interference.

    Real Life 
  • Many common childhood illnesses can be quite serious if caught as adults and could lead to severe complications for the fetus if caught while pregnant.
    • The Varicella zoster virus (aka Chickenpox), while mostly harmless to children, can be fatal if contracted in adulthood, which is why before a vaccine was available, parents would often try to get their children infected while they were still young so they could develop immunity, and those opposed to vaccination still do. Since there are still minor risks in childhood (approximately the same risks one would have from a case of the flu, plus the obvious danger of passing on the virus to a non-immune adult), the development of the vaccine has been quite welcome. And if that's not enough, even if you get it as a child it can turn up again when you're an adult in the much more uncomfortable form of Herpes Zoster (shingles).
    • The same reasoning (and infection attempts) is often applied to Rubella (aka German measles), at least for young girls. In children, it's unpleasant but mostly harmless - in pregnant women, it is extremely serious, able to blind or kill the fetus.
    • Mumps, while not usually fatal, is much more unpleasant to adults than children. It's actually known to sometimes cause sterility in adult men due to severe inflammation and swelling of the testes.
  • Most in-house pesticides work in this manner, killing only the adult insects. A second "bug bomb" is set off a week or so later to get any that were still in eggs.
    • Similarly, treatments for head lice do not affect eggs, so a second treatment must be applied around 10 days after the first.
  • Huntington's chorea only becomes noticeable in adulthood (the exact age varies, but it often only manifests after the carrier has had children).
    • Huntington's chorea is also terrifying with a dose of Paranoia Fuel thrown in. It's fatal in 100% of cases, generally between ages 40 and 50. It's also a dominant genetic disorder, so when you see your parent wasting away from it, you know there's a 50% chance that that'll be you in 25 years, and the same probability applies to each of your siblings. So, do you get tested and know for sure whether you have the gene, or remain ignorant until you're in your 40s and the symptoms either do or don't appear? If you do test positive, do you have children anyway or resign yourself to dying childless in order to avoid passing on the gene?
  • According to The Other Wiki, the people killed in the 1918 influenza pandemic were mostly otherwise healthy young adults. This was due to a phenomenon known as a Cytokine Storm, where the body's immune system is sent into overdrive. The very young and old were relatively unaffected, due to their less robust immune systems, which reduced the damage that could be done.
  • The 2020 Coronavirus pandemic is this, as it has been primarily fatal to older adults (though younger ones have died too.) Young children, however, often do not show symptoms at all, or may only have mild ones. Not in the case as of 2021 where the Coronavirus variants meant that even those as young as infants aren't safe from it.
  • In 1620, 70 men and women, along with 32 children, boarded the Mayflower, leaving England for Virginia. They ended up in Massachusetts where, woefully unprepared for the upcoming winter, the adults came down with various illnesses like pneumonia. By the end of the winter, only 20 of the adults were still left alive. Miraculously, though, nearly all the children survived, though nearly all of them had lost one or both of their parents.
  • Elephant endotheliotropic herpes virus inverts this trope. Though this disease, which is fatal in approximately 80% of cases, can affect elephants of any age note , most fatalities have involved Asian elephants whose ages were still in single digits. Since Asian elephants are an endangered species, this makes the virus particularly devastating as it is killing calves that might otherwise have grown up to have calves of their own. Fortunately, efforts are being made to find a vaccine.