Friday, May 15, 2009

Zombie Fire Ants

According to a Texas A&M study, biting, territorial fire ants cost the Texas economy about $1 billion annually by damaging electrical equipment. So, to combat this problem, scientists came up with the only logical course of action- turn them into zombies. To achieve this feat, researchers will introduce tiny phorid flies that lay eggs in the ants brain. The eggs will eventually hatch and literally eat the brain. The whole process, which is designed to control, not eliminate the ant population, is actually pretty incredible: the ant will get up and wander for about two weeks while the maggot feeds, said Rob Plowes, a research associate at the University of Texas at Austin. "There is no brain left in the ant, and the ant just starts wandering aimlessly," he said. About a month after the egg is laid, the ant's head falls off and a new fly emerges ready to attack another fire ant. Seriously, as if fire ants weren't fucked up enough- someone had to make them zombies. Whoever originally devised this idea is probably a complete psycho.

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