An ant with a fungus growing out of its head sits on a green stem.

Not the Last of Us: The Truth About Zombie Fungi

Monday, March 6

6:30–7:30 p.m. | Online

HBO’s new series The Last of Us has drawn millions of viewers and generated considerable buzz since its release. Based on a 2013 video game, the show is set 20 years after a global pandemic sparked by a mass fungal infection that transforms people into zombie-like creatures. The fictional fungus, which is based on real-life species that infect ants, is referred to in The Last of Us as “Cordyceps.” That is the name of a group of actual fungi, but where is the line between fact and fancy? NYBG has the answers and is here to set the record straight. Join Assistant Curator of Mycology, Dr. João Araújo, as he untangles a few common misconceptions about this fascinating (and frightening!) fungus.


Images ©João Araújo