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dead wasp family

Work in my lab has mainly concerned insect pathogenic fungi, which kill bugs in the gruesomest way. And unlike humans, who suffer relatively infrequently from fungal infections, sick insects are more likely to be attacked by fungi than by other pathogens. Imagine a spore landing on you, germinating to bore through your tough exoskeleton, then just growing inside you 'til you're all used up. Pretty horrific, eh? Here is a young family of wasps, all killed by Hirsutella saussurei on their small nest. The stalks projecting from their bodies are fruiting bodies of the fungus--each bears a deadly load of spores ready to stick on a new victim.