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Animal Mind Control

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posted on Jan, 4 2012 @ 03:00 PM
Great article in the latest issue of the Scientist - with examples and scientific explanations about how parasites manipulate their hosts' brains and behavior. The one about how wasps turn caterpillars into their meal ticket AND bodyguard is cool - and the description of how jewel wasps turn cockroaches into zombies and use them is .....illuminating.

Animal Mind Control

Examples of parasites that manipulate the behavior of their hosts are not hard to come by, but scientists have only recently begun to understand how they induce such dramatic changes.

A normally insatiable caterpillar suddenly stops eating. A quick look inside its body reveals the reason: dozens of little wasp larvae gnawing and secreting digestive enzymes to penetrate its body wall. They have been living inside the caterpillar for days—like little vampires, feeding on its “blood”—and are finally making their exodus to build their cocoons on its bright-green exterior.

In the caterpillar’s brain, a massive immune reaction is taking place—the invertebrate equivalent of a cytokine storm—and among the factors being released is an invertebrate neurohormone called octopamine. “It’s a very important compound for controlling behavior in insects,” says invertebrate behavioral physiologist Shelley Adamo of Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. “Octopamine levels go up, and that plays a role in shutting off feeding.”

But the parasitic larvae don’t stop there. They also inhibit the host’s ability to break down the substance. “Octopamine levels remain high for days, and this caterpillar never really eats again,” Adamo explains. “Basically, it starves to death.” This plays the important role of preventing the caterpillar from picking off the cocoons, one by one, and eating the metamorphosing larvae alive. Simply killing their host isn’t an option, Adamo says, because if the caterpillar dies, its body will become overrun with fungal pathogens—unwelcome visitors to a wasp nursery. Plus, non-eating caterpillars retain their defensive reflexes, which protect both them and the young wasps from arthropod predators. “They’ve turned their host from being a meal ticket [into] their bodyguard,” Adamo says.

edit on 4/1/12 by soficrow because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 4 2012 @ 03:10 PM
wow, creepy stuff.

posted on Jan, 4 2012 @ 09:01 PM
reply to post by pocketsando

Isn't it? ...Kinda makes you wonder what parasites use humans, how and for what, doesn't it?

I think I favor the psychic-feeding-on-energy hypothesis, but do I recognize that the same host can accommodate several different parasites at one time, so I'm open to alternate theories.

posted on Jan, 5 2012 @ 12:38 AM
reply to post by soficrow

This is my favorite creepy but interesting video of mind control by parasites:

Zombie Snails

The way it transforms the snail into a lure to spread more parasites is visually stunning, you have to see it to believe it.

I wonder if there are parasites making humans into zombies LOL

edit on 5-1-2012 by Arbitrageur because: clarification

posted on Jan, 5 2012 @ 07:46 AM
Ugh! Who needs horror films? Nature definately comes up with the best plots.

posted on Jan, 5 2012 @ 07:55 AM
egads!!! This means that the Zombie threat is a real possibility, except that instead of something paranormal it will be natural parasites that could cause it. oh and now I'm scared of zombie snails!!!

posted on Jan, 5 2012 @ 02:37 PM
what an interesting read it seems as tho scientists and our Gov is taking a serious look at the capability of mind control through the use of natural animal Tech...

just the other day I came across this well kept secret of Black Ops military experiments.

Looks like the Raptor captures the shark after Luring it to the surface with its indestructible tail. then Utilizing 6" claws, RPG and the sharks natural fear of heights against it the Raptor flies to high altitude and begins mating with the shark at freefall speeds,
falling into the ocean and releasing the shark to live its life normally until one day this shark Unknowingly gives birth the the RAPTORSHARK!!!

posted on Jan, 5 2012 @ 05:02 PM
reply to post by -W1LL


More pics.


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