You might think of parasites as stealthy
wanting to stay hidden from their hosts
But some parasites are attention seekers
and prefer to make a colourful statement
One amazing example of this is the broodsacs.
Now the broodsacs are acquired by snails by ingesting the eggs in bird droppings.
Once the parasite is consumed by the snail it transforms
into a form called the sporocyst,
which infects the snail’s gut.
Now a second sporocyst is then formed from that,
which develops in the eye stalk or tentacleof the snail.
This sporocyst changes colour, pulsates, flashesbright colours
and looks quite like a caterpillar or maggot.
And the parasite also makes the snail move out
into more open and more well-lit areas,
where it’s more likely to be hunted on by a bird.
Once ingested by the bird the
parasite develops again and produces eggs
that go back out
into the bird droppings the life cycle starts all over again.