Sex, food, and death
Remember that notorious scene from Alien? You know the one. But instead of just one alien organism bursting out of its host, picture hundreds, even thousands. That’s what happens when Copidosoma floridanum wasps mature, says Laura Corley, assistant professor of entomology. Admittedly, the bursting out is a bit less dramatic than in the movie, for the wasps’ caterpillar host is nothing but a dried out husk when they exit.
Corley studies C. floridanum because of its “fascinating biology.” Female C. floridanum lay up to 40 individual eggs, and each of those eggs develops into between 900 and 3,000 offspring. The offspring of any one egg … » More …