« Competition for Nest Sites between Sand Martins and Coots | Main | Hoverfly »

The Destroyer of Insects

A dead dung fly, probably Scathophaga stercoraria, infected with a fungus, probably a member of the genus Entomophthora (Ento = insect, mophthora = destroyer).  Apparently, before these fungi kill their hosts, they make them move to the tip of a blade of grass or twig and stand there with their wings in the open position.  Presumably this improves the dispersion of the spores that eventually emerge from the dead body.

Photos taken in Reading University grounds, Reading, UK, on 2009-05-29.

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
All HTML will be escaped. Hyperlinks will be created for URLs automatically.