Animals would stop the zombie apocalypse before it started

In most zombie apocalypse scenarios, only humans are converted into the shambling undead. And according to one naturalist, that's why zombie takeovers are doomed to fail. In the war between zombies and nature, nature would win.

Over at Boing Boing, there's a terrifically funny and informative essay by National Wildlife Federation naturalist David Mizejewski on all the ways that wildlife would reduce a zombie incursion to piles of bones. Everything from carrion birds, who eat rotting flesh, to bears, wild cats, and even mountain goats would take those dull, slow zombies out.

Advertisement

Here's a great bit on how jaguars would hunt zombies:

Even bigger and more powerful than mountain lions are jaguars, which range through Mexico and are still sometimes found in the desert southwest of the United States. Jaguars also hunt by stealth, and have a special technique to quickly dispatch their prey: a skull crushing bite to the head, delivered with their huge canine teeth. A jaguar bite delivers 2,000 pounds of pressure per inch, the most powerful mammalian bite on the continent. That, combined with a killing technique perfect for dispatching zombies, makes the jaguar its natural predator.

Watch this video of a jaguar making short work of a caiman. A zombie wouldn't stand a chance against these big cats.

And if animals didn't get them, the bugs would. Writes Mizejewski:

Ultimately, it's not the North America's mega-fauna that pose the most threat to zombies. In nature, there are a whole host of tiny creatures whose main purpose is to feed upon and break down the flesh of the dead: the decomposers. Zombies, with their rotting flesh, are obviously not immune to these decomposers (what do you think causes the rotting effect?), many of which are too small to see with the bare eye. Bacteria, fungi, molds, insects such as fly maggots or flesh-eating beetles, and other invertebrates, all make up nature's diminutive clean-up crew. And it can obliterate a dead body in surprisingly little time. The clumsy undead wouldn't have the dexterity to pick off these decomposers, even if they could see or feel them. It would just be a matter of time. Stripped off all soft tissue, including brains, the zombies would be reduced to hollowed-out skeletons.

Not convinced? Check out this video of a rabbit being consumed down to the bone, by wildlife decomposers, in just a week.

Read the rest of this incredible essay, which will make you feel safer from zombies — and less safe from everything else — over at Boing Boing.

DISCUSSION

stevemaher
Steve Maher

Of course Max Brooks being the genius he is has covered this in the zombie survival guide.

Cross-Species Infection

All animals besides humans can instinctively detect traces of the Solanum virus, and nearly all have the same reaction to it: terror. From ants to whales, nearly all living creatures will flee in terror from the zombie virus. Solanum is fatal to all living creatures, regardless of size, species, or ecosystem. Reanimation, however, takes place only in humans. Studies have shown that Solanum infecting a non-human brain will die within hours of the death of its host, making the carcass safe to handle. Infected animals expire before the virus can replicate throughout their bodies. Infection from insect bites such as from mosquitoes can also be discounted. Testing has consistently shown that all parasitic insects can sense and will reject an infected host 100 percent of the time. It would seem that Solanum is custom made for the human race, since reanimation only happens in humans, human zombies are the only medium through which the virus can spread to new hosts. This could explain why zombies seek to eat living animals, with a preference towards human flesh over other animals.

Additionally in terms of bacterial decay or decay brought on by micro-organisms he states-

The toxicity level of undead flesh, combined with the 100% fatality rate for infected lifeforms significantly slows down the process of decomposition. This is because all organisms, even the bacteria that play a role in natural decomposition, are also killed when in contact with Solanum. This has the noteworthy side-effect of making many zombies odorless, due to the absence of the bacteria responsible for body odor and the traditional smell of rotting flesh. Zombies that have been undead for many months may start to show minor signs of topical decay, and the recently turned may smell because humans void their bowels after death. Other than that, zombies produce no odor.

Sources

http://zombie.wikia.com/wiki/Solanum

p.s.

Pishaw to your so called science :)