This shocking footage shows a fight to the death between a mouse and a hornet which emerges as the winner. In the brutal duel the insect wrestles with the rodent’s face and eventually leaves the mouse flailing and fatally injured on the ground.
The footage, claimed to have been filmed in Gulfport, Mississippi, has been widely shared on social media. One user who posted the clip online claimed the parasitic wasp was targeting the mouse to lay its eggs in, but others who viewed the video thought it unlikely the hornet would use a mammal as a host. At the start of the clip the mouse is lying on its back on the hard, stony ground, desperately trying to wrestle the insect off its front. The mouse then flips over, dragged along the ground by the apparently more powerful insect.
The two creatures tussle and roll over several times, with the hornet aiming directly for the mouse’s face. After a lengthy struggle the mouse lies on the ground and appears to be dead after the hornet flies off, but moments later it stirs again, apparently in pain. One commenter online said that wasps would not lay eggs in mammals so the hornet in the video would not have been targeting the mouse for that reason. But another said there was no reason they could not, saying it was merely unusual for a small hornet to overpower a larger creature.
Parasitoid insects, which include many wasps and ants, are species with larvae that eat their host usually another insect from the inside out. After a short gestational period, the larvae hatch and begin consuming their host. Parasitoid species are mostly types of bee, wasp and ant, though some species of fly also employ the gruesome technique. Another possibility is that another wasp had been attacked nearby, as the insects can sense chemicals which are released by their dying comrades.
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