Mushrooms are smarter than we thought?

Fungus spreading

Humans are smart, but believe it or not, mushrooms have a surprising amount of intelligence. Specifically, mushrooms have cellular intelligence. Fungi have been here way longer than humans, about 715-810 million years. These creatures are a true mystery to many. Mushrooms are neither a plant nor animal; they are a type of fungus containing a substance called ergosterol, similar in structure to cholesterol in animals. In fact, hardcore vegans are questioning whether they should really be eating these odd creatures as mushrooms’ bodies have a meat like texture and are biologically closer to animals than plants.

How smart are mushrooms really?

There are many, many types of mushrooms that act differently than others. One type of mushroom is a fungus. This slime mold is very good at creating networks. In fact, Japan was clever enough to use these fungi to create a new subway system. They did it by designing a nutrient driven maze with nodes representing all the major cities in the country. Each of the nodes had a piece of oat on them which was the slime mold’s source of nutrition. Then, they let the slime mold grow. At first, the slime grew randomly, but after about 28 hours it reorganized itself in the most effective way possible to maximize their access to the oats. Based on this, the Japanese subway system was reorganized in a more efficient manner.

“Zombie Ants”

Zombie ants are controlled by the fungus Ophiocordyceps unilateralis. This fungus takes control of the ants nervous system and essentially controls their anatomical movements. Influenced by the fungus, the ants are encouraged to climb to a high point of a tree and bite a branch, attaching themselves until death. Next, the fungus uses the dead ant’s body to grow and develop.

Mushrooms are much more than meets the eye. Their innate intelligence shows that these fungi are capable of more than is imagined.

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