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In the science fiction television series Stargate Atlantis, the Wraith are the original enemy alien species, first introduced in the pilot episode . In the series, they are a vampire-like telepathic race who feed on the "life-force" of humans, and are the dominant power in the Pegasus galaxy. The first season of Atlantis is focused on the main characters finding a way to survive an overwhelming attack by the Wraith. Although in the later seasons new enemies have taken some of the attention away from the Wraith, they remain a potent and ever-present threat to the Atlantis Expedition.
All of the named Wraith who have appeared on Stargate Atlantis are named by humans, as no Wraith has been willing to reveal his true name. John Sheppard often gives captured Wraith amusing/generic Earth names. The majority of non-warrior male and female Wraith were played by the same actors, James Lafazanos and Andee Frizzell respectively. James Lafazanos left the show after season 2. Other male Wraith have been played by Christopher Heyerdahl (season 3 onwards), Jeffrey C. Robinson (season 2), Dan Payne (season 3), James Bamford (season 3), Brendan Penny (season 4), and Tyler McClendon (season 5).
The Wraith are intelligent humanoids who are genetically close to insects, though they are predominantly human. They evolved in the Pegasus galaxy after a human population seeded by the Ancients was fed upon by an insect called the iratus bug, which has the ability to draw upon a human's life to heal itself. As they fed, the bugs incorporated human DNA into themselves, giving rise to the Wraith. The Wraith too feed on humans, treating them akin to livestock and regarding the act of feeding as nothing more than natural predation.
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