o The Frog Blog: Parasitic Mind Controlling Flies

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Parasitic Mind Controlling Flies


Phorid flies are parasitizing on fire ants, a new scientific study has revealed. Details of the flies gruesome reproductive habits are truly fascinating. It has been disclosed that the flies lay their eggs in fire ants. The egg develops into a maggot, which then seems to be able to control the movement and behaviour of the ants. The maggot "directs" the ant to a moist, leafy place—phorid larvae are vulnerable to drying out—a safe distance from other fire ants. The maggot then eats the energy rich brain of the fire ant, causes the head to fall off (see picture above) and then hatches around 40 days later. Nice?

For more information on this grisly and fascinating act, click here. Thanks to Aoise Keogan Nooshabadi (Form IV) for leading us to this great story!

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