Subtitles section Play video Print subtitles Fungi and slime molds race to decompose dead matter on the forest floor. Many spread by releasing spores up to thirty thousand a second. If just one of these spores lands in the right place, and takes root, it can colonize a whole new area. But not all fungi feed on the dead. Days ago, a spore landed on this ant. Now she's acting strange. A network of roots has infiltrated her muscles. Her body has been taken over by cordyceps, a parasitic fungus. It floods her brain with chemicals, drugging her, compelling her to head where conditions are perfect. Just the right amount of light. Just the right amount of humidity for the parasite growing inside. It forces her to clamp down in a death bite. And cordyceps reveals its gruesome nature. After three weeks of growth, cordyceps can release its own spores. Infecting more ants. Releasing more spores. Infecting more ants. Releasing more spores. Infecting more ants. Infecting more ants. More ants. More ants. Cordyceps can wipe out entire ant colonies. But more than just ants are at risk. There are over six hundred species of cordyceps spread across the world. Most are found in jungles where they prey on a whole host of victims.