When a female jewel wasp is ready to lay its egg it finds a cockroach and administers two stings. The first sting is to the roach’s thorax
temporarily paralyzing its front legs. The second sting is directly to the roach’s brain. This sting causes the roach to lose its escape reflex.
Without its escape reflex the wasp, who is much too small to carry the cockroach, can grab one of the cockroach’s antennae and lead it around like a
dog on a leash. The wasp takes her new pet back to her nest, lays an egg on its belly and seals it inside. Eventually the larva will hatch and consume
the still living roach, which happily lies there until it dies.
This video is really cool. I even feel sorry for the cockroach.
Sorry about the title. Guess I should get some sleep before I post.
This worm’s larva develops and grows inside orthopteran insects (grasshoppers, crickets, etc.). As it grows the worm will consume the internal
organs of its host until there is nothing left but the head, legs and outer shell. Once the parasite is grown (usually 3-4 times larger than its
host), it manipulates its host to actually seek out and dive into a large body of water. Once in the water the worm emerges and swims away to live out
the rest of its life, leaving the host to drown.
C. unilateralis is a species of entomopathogenic fungus that infects and alters the behavior of ants in order to ensure the widespread distribution of
its spores. The spores enter the body of the insect through its spiracles, where they begin to consume the non-vital soft tissues. When the fungus is
ready to spore, its mycelia enter the ant’s brain and change how it perceives pheromones, causing the insect to climb to the top of a plant and use
its mandibles to secure itself to the stem. The fungus
then kills the ant, and the fruiting bodies of C. unilateralis grow from its head and explode, releasing the spores.
Maybe you should just do a spell check on your title before I go too far on the subject of your spelling mistake!
On the topic I think you're trying to get across?
Insects are one of the most incredible creatures under the sun.
I'm constantly amazed by them and humbled.
Just the fact that ants never sleep is almost too much to fathom!
Thanks for the videos, I'll enjoy going through them...
Glyptapanteles is a genus of parasitoid wasps found in Central and North America. A female Glyptapanteles will lay her eggs (about 80 at a time)
inside a young caterpillar host. After hatching the larvae will feed on the caterpillar’s succulent juicy insides until they are fully developed.
They then emerge from the body, attach themselves to a branch or leaf, and form a cocoon. However, one or two larvae remain behind and manipulate the
caterpillar to take up position near the cocoons, arch its back, and cease to move or feed. However, when the cocoons are disturbed, the caterpillar
will thrash around violently. The pupae effectively have themselves a zombie-caterpillar bodyguard. The caterpillar remains this way until the cocoons
hatch at which point it dies.
D. dendriticum spends its adult life inside the liver of its host. After mating, the eggs are excreted in the feces. The first intermediate host, the
terrestrial snail, eats the feces, and becomes infected by the larval parasites. The larvae (or cercariae) drill through the wall of the gut and
settle in its digestive tract, where they develop into a juvenile stage. The snail tries to defend itself by walling the parasites off in cysts, which
it then excretes and leaves behind in the grass. The second intermediate host, an ant, uses the trail of slime as a source of moisture. The ant then
swallows a cyst loaded with hundreds of juvenile lancet flukes. The parasites enter the gut and then drift through its body. Most of the cercariae
encyst in the haemocoel of the ant and mature into metacercariae, but one moves to the sub-esophageal ganglion (a cluster of nerve cells underneath
the esophagus). There, the fluke takes control of the ant’s actions by manipulating these nerves. As evening approaches and the air cools, the
infested ant is drawn away from other members of the colony and upward to the top of a blade of grass. Once there, it clamps its mandibles onto the
top of the blade and stays there until dawn. Afterward, it goes back to its normal activity at the ant colony. If the host ant were to be subjected to
the heat of the direct sun, it would die along with the parasite. Night after night, the ant goes back to the top of a blade of grass until a grazing
animal comes along and eats the blade, ingesting the ant along with it, thus putting lancet flukes back inside their preferred host.
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