Ant Zombie Tale: Mind-Controlling Fungus Loses to Lethal Foe
A fungus that invades the brains of ants, turning them into zombies on a death march, may have met its match. Another parasitic fungus, it turns out, effectively castrates the zombie-ant fungus so it can’t spread its spores, a new study finds.
The finding explains how an ant colony can survive infestations by the zombie-ant fungus.
"In a case where biology is stranger than fiction, the parasite of the zombie-ant fungus is itself a fungus, a hyperparasitic fungus that specializes in attacking the parasite that turns the ants into zombies," said study leader David Hughes of Penn State University in a statement.