Mar 16, 2011

Poof Go the Spores

Lie is hard for tropical carpenter ants. You've got to work in the heat (wet heat), with little fluctuation in the seasons. You've got no union protection, and your boss treats you like just another drone. But that's nothing compared to zombie fungus.

That's right, here's yet another tale of critters getting zombified by a parasitic something or other. In this case, it's a fungus that infects a tropical carpenter ant, coerces it to climb 25cm up a plant, face NNE, latch onto the plant with its mandibles, and then die. The fungus then sprouts the twiggish growth you see below, and *poof* go the spores (a great band name, if I do say so myself).

Thanks for the link, Kris. I'll be sure to skip the mushrooms on my pizza tonight. You can never be too sure.

Photo source: Pete Huele via CBC


Anonymous said...

It's too bad. Before that infection he was a fungi.

Raging Wombat said...

Dang it! I wish I had thought of that one.

flying eagle woman said...

OMG...I'm rendered speechless - please don't tell anyone!

The Forest Minstrel said...

Zombie ants... sounds like a really bad, B-movie horror flick!

decorative mirrors said...

very interesting
thanx for sharing

Action Pest Control said...

Zombie Ants...Oh my! I am not sure what I would do if I found one of these...great picture though!