Meet the zombie spiders who serve the offspring of wasps

Scientists have discovered wasps who turn spiders into zombies to serve as slaves.

The Japanese researchers say the wasps can rob a certain species of spider of its free will, turning it into a worker zombie to build a nursery web to protect the wasp’s pupae.

The wasp slave masters, Reclinervellus nielseni, direct the spiders to lay down more fibres to strengthen their cocoon web and then make the spiders return to the hub of the web before they are killed.

The journal the Company of Biologists says: “Some wasps have unpleasant habits. Hijacking an unsuspecting insect or spider, parasitic wasps incapacitate their hapless victims by taking control of their nervous systems and turning them into zombies.”

According to Keizo Takasuka from Kobe University, the wasps also deposits egg on or within the spider’s body.

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