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Zombie Snail refers to a video of a snail taken over by the parasitic worm Leucochloridium, who then controls its motor functions and uses its eye stalks and body to mimic a caterpillar so a bird will eat it. The parasite can then reproduce in the bird's digestive tract and transmit via the bird's feces. The video went viral on Twitter on August 12th, 2019, as users commented upon the horrifying nature of it.
On August 12th, 2019, Twitter user @nakamanian posted video of a snail infected with the Leucochloridium parasite (shown below).
【ＵＭＡ】内部がピストン、明らかに人を小馬鹿にした内部構造、地球外生命体か？カラフルな内部構造にワイ、雛あられ食いたくなる。 pic.twitter.com/UpeC2JTG4c— 味噌王 仲間 (@nakamanian) August 12, 2019
Later that day, Twitter user @minouyet tweeted the video, gaining over 23,000 retweets and 59,000 likes.
On October 15th, 2012, the YouTube account for National Geographic posted a video about the "Zombie Snails" (shown below). On September 19th, 2014, Wired wrote a story about the snails, calling them "Disco Zombies."
As @nakamanian's and @minouyet's videos spread on Twitter, users began commenting upon their gross nature. Producer and DJ Snails tweeted "HOLY FUCK THATS A BIG NO FOR ME," gaining over 290 retweets and 2,000 likes (shown below, left). User @lamour tweeted that he had "called the FBI" after watching one second of the video (shown below, right).
Others joked that the snail was somehow apt for 2019. Twitter user @sophiescott made the joke, gaining over 110 retweets and 400 likes (shown below, left). User @upulie made a similar joke, gaining over 60 retweets and 450 likes (shown below, right). The video was covered by AV Club and its reactions were covered by Twitter Moments.
On August 14th, Instagram user @csirogram reposted the snail video, gathering mroe than 32,000 views over the next two weeks.
View this post on Instagram
ALL GLORY TO THE HYPNOSNAIL! 🐌⠀ ⠀ Think this groovy guy is having a great time? Think again.⠀ ⠀ Succinea (amber snails) are often hosts to a parasitic flatworm called Leucochloridium paradoxum. The flatworm takes control of the motor neurons in snail’s eye stalks to create these pulsating patterns.⠀ ⠀ The patterns of the “zombie snail” mimic a caterpillar, in a bid to attract hungry birds flying by. All in the hopes that a bird will snatch up the eye-catching snack and provide the flatworm with a cozy intestinal tract where it can reproduce.⠀ ⠀ All is not lost! Incredibly, the host snails can survive this ordeal thanks to regeneration. As the flatworm develops mostly in the snail’s eye stalk, it’s this portion of the snail that gets eaten by birds (they’ll pass on the shell, thanks.) The snail can then grow a new stalk and eye spot, and perhaps, start the journey again.⠀ ⠀ Footage: Lin Ruian⠀ ⠀ #csiro #zombiezombiezombieieie #snail #zombiesnail #science #welovescience #hypnotoad
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Aug 13, 2019 at 03:34PM EDT
Aug 13, 2019 at 04:22PM EDT
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