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Thread: The branch of zombie?

  1. #1
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    Default The branch of zombie?

    ID: Id help appreciated


    Unsure if this is the result of the same fungus called 'Entomophthora muscae', this particular tree/branch, surprisingly the branch also had turned dead, was filled with such similar dead flies. I could easily spot 6 of them, at the lower level, that had already perished, and one that seemed to be at the edge of perishing as it seemed alive, but hardly moved. Also known as zombie flies, they seem to get infected with this deadly fungal virus that survives in the fly until the right time to pop out, forcing the fly to get onto some high location and paralyses them only to burst out of the intersegmental membranes. This particular one was the best example of the impact the virus has as the whole rear end had popped off with the fungus. Couldn’t understand how all the flies preferred the same tree to cling onto, as there were another half a dozen of them high up on the tree. Would love to learn more about this deadly fungus from the experts.

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    Location: Nagla trail
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  2. #2
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    Interesting observation. The fungus covering its rear body can be seen distinctly. Maybe does the fungus attacks them after perching on the tree/branch? Some web(?) like thing can also be seen around it. Is that a spider's web? Thanks for sharing.

    Abhishek, If you have more details on this, please do share. Thanks.

  3. #3
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    Very interesting find. I have never seen or heard about this particular kind, but yes, it does look like a parasitic fungus. I don't know much more about it than what Prajwal has already said.

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