02.01.2023 Part of the balance of nature

I came across this video today about the Cordyceps fungus.  I’ve seen other videos of the behavior exhibited by the fungus including from David Attenborough in one of his Life on Earth videos but haven’t found it to share. This is from Planet Fungi.

As explained, the fungus invades an insect’s body and then “digests” it from the inside eventually creating fruiting bodies as shown in the video.  I’ve not photographed one as advanced as in that but do have a shot of one getting started on a Flower Longhorn beetle in the Wendell State Forest back in 2009.

I have a shot of a Cordyceps mushroom but at the time I photographed it was unaware of what I was seeing so did not dig it up as the person in the video does.

It would have been interesting to see what it was on underneath all those needles. To us this might appear rather gruesome but it is nature at work and nature has no sentiments.


About Steve Gingold

I am a Nature Photographer with interests in all things related. Water, flowers, insects and fungi are my main interests but I am happy to photograph wildlife and landscapes and all other of Nature's subjects.
This entry was posted in Closeup Photography, ecology, Fungi and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

17 Responses to 02.01.2023 Part of the balance of nature

  1. shoreacres says:

    This is about as coincidental as you can get. Today, another person I follow posted this on her blog. I’m going to share your post with her. It cracks me up that something I’ve never heard of should show up in two places on the same day.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Eliza Waters says:

    Kind of creepy, but everything is food to something, even us!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. melody says:

    I take powdered cordyceps, but I hear commercial cordyceps is a variety that is raised vegetarian these days, so I guess that the interesting flavor isn’t caterpillar residue.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I didn’t know cordyceps was a supplement but then there is a lot about fungi that isn’t common knowledge. I also didn’t know that cordyceps could be vegetarian. As a kid I ate some insects in a school class so caterpillar, or in that case ants and bees, might be interesting…especially if chocolate covered as were those other two.

      Liked by 1 person

      • melody says:

        You can even get cordyceps gummies nowadays, though perhaps not as tasty as chocolate covered bugs–? But cordyceps has become a big deal in the medicinal fungal world, thanks to Traditional Chinese Medicine. The fungus has more than 1,500 years of medicinal use, per Wikipedia.
        Hey, if you try it, you can let us know which is more fun to eat, chocolate covered bugs or brown rice cultured parasitic fungi.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I take too many supplements now as it is but should I decide I need more and this is indicated I will let you know. I bet chocolate wins. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Definitely creepy! I was thinking the same as what his last word was, ” yet.” !!!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. They look like match sticks with brown heads instead of red.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. bluebrightly says:

    I listened to an interview on the radio about this. It was very interesting – and now, brought more to life with your photographs. Thanks Steve!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. doerfpub says:

    Very interesting Steve, thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

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