Zombie ants, 48 million years ago
- 18 Aug 2010 09:57 (South Africa)
A fungus Ophiocordyceps unilateralis, can invade a carpenter ant's body and manipulate it's behaviour, ultimately killing it and using its dead body to hoist up stalk to release spores. Just before the ant dies, it clamps itself onto a leaf. Harvard University scientists have discovered the characteristic "death grip" marks on fossilised leaves that are calculated to be 48 million years old. So it turns out that the zombie apocalypse has been here all along. Read more: New Scientist and the Guardian.