Upon. All ambassadors were, torn from his visit to the lesion home ward he described, them as the most noble and wise species. He'd ever encountered, and with. A glint in his eye encouraged. All his fellow high-ranking, leaders to, visit they award to gain a new perspective and. Enjoy a complimentary stay. At the Sano's of enlightenment. And the implantation. So. We returned today to the alien civilization, series for, look at parasitic, and symbiotic, aliens. Bit. Of a tricky topic because, parasite, is a somewhat, vague wart as is symbiotic, the. Specific, biological tone, is in super precise either but, it's only doesn't mean quite the same thing as we did when we came up with a ward, originally. It meant someone, who eats at the table of another and in, that context. It's really about the same as saying mutual, a bit of slime that was more popular when I was young for post who lives off others without giving anything in return, this. Again can be a bit vague since, one could argue any, hunter or predator was a parasite, on whatever species they hunted as opposed, to a formal, or hortal who is arguably, in a more symbiotic, relationship, you. Eventually eat your flock or crop but provide food and protection in, the mean time so. Like a lot of terms we look at in science fiction we, want to be careful about overextending. The definition, for the same reason we wouldn't count a person as a cyborg, because, they had a pacemaker or, metal filling in a tooth the. Strict biological, definition is an organism, that lives on, or in another organism the, host causes. Some home by doing so and is, adapted, structurally, to this existence, which. Is to say it's body has evolved heavily to fit this role after, to the point that it wouldn't be functional, without it when. We think of parasitic aliens, though we tend to think of critters that control, other people's, minds or eat and replace us brain. Bugs who land heel and wiggle into your ear or catch you by yourself, and eat you and mimic, you to others, there. Are countless films, books and TV shows that have used this such, as John Carpenter's 1982. Film the thing which. Is merely the third or fourth adaptation. Of the novella who, goes there by, John W, Campbell the, legendary, editor of astounding science. Fiction magazine. Where so many of the authors of the Golden Age of science fiction got their start you. Can pick up a free copy of who goes there and also get a 30-day trial of audible just, use my link audible.com, slash Isaac. Or text Isaac - 500, - 500, so. We have a lot of examples from science, fiction to look at and, we'll get through a number of them today but it's also worth noting that we have a lot of surprising, examples, from nature - some. Are simply out like gross and entirely, home Fulcher their host while, others actually provides some benefits, and all, arguably, symbiotic. But, we tend to assume that critters like this couldn't, really evolve a civilization. Because, they're not really smart themselves. Indeed. Many of our examples, for today from fiction could only be considered ludicrous, from an evolutionary perspective, and, for. Many others they're parasitic, nature is more behavioral they. Only latch onto us and feed in a metaphorical, sense it's. Worth mentioning though that quite a few parasites, do engage in mind control or impersonation. For. Mind control we have any number of fairly revolting, parasites, that either directly infect the brain or perhaps the spine or sometimes, even just the digestive, system and create, cravings, for food their.
Hosts Normally, would not have an. Alien, parasite for, instance Mike into someone's stomach and cause them to have a craving for minerals heavy in tungsten, because, it needs tungsten, to live many. Of these are nearly brainless, even, compared to they're often rather stupid, hosts yet can annex their mode of functions, and control them we've, got a type of fly that infects ants with eggs which, when the lava hatch crawl, into its brain eats, it and Casta, to continue to act and walk like normal till. It has a chance to bear yourself somewhere, so the fly can finish maturing, this. Can happen with no brain at all either, we've, got a fungus that infects caterpillars. And actually, causes them to plant themselves by. Burying, their head upside, down on the ground and and uses them for nutrients. As a stock it's pounced from this. Can also sometimes, be a bit symbiotic. We've got a type of acacia tree that ants love the nectar from so. Much so they'll protect that tree from animals, and weeds which, sounds mutually beneficial, except. The ants not only get addicted to the nectar but lose the ability to digest anything, else still. These are all fairly simple organisms, indeed, those last two will mindless but for parasitic, behavior, by impersonation. We've got some clever ones perhaps, the best-known example, is the brown-headed, cowbird, that lays essays and other boards nests, often, after destroying the eggs already, there and it's called a brood parasite. As it relies on other animals to actually raise its young there, are many species that do this but the cuckoo stands out as boards, are generally considered the smallest class of animals after mammals. Indeed, a few are smaller than many mammals which, would indicate this is a plausible evolutionary. Pathway, for species to take on the road to higher intelligence. A parallel. To brood parasites, of social, parasites, like, certain types of bees than Veda hive replaced, the Queen and that the workers continue to feed them and care for their own young that's. A strategy that's often implied in a lot of secret alien invasion scenarios. Where, for instance an alien, might impersonate, a leader we've. Also got klepto, parasites, that steal, food gathered, by the host and that's, got some interesting extreme, variations, like the tongue eating louse which, infects, fish cuts, off their tongue and latches on the stump to replace it regular.
Viewers Will note unlike, in many episodes I, did, not suggest me, a drink and a snack before, beginning as many, of these little monsters are, rather unpleasant. To look at or contemplate. However. There, is the symbiosis valt, and for instance a species, might replace something stung with itself and steal, some, food that way but give a heightened sense of taste or smell, in exchange. Humans. Have a huge number of somewhat, symbiotic, bacteria inside. Us ranging, from our gut bacteria that. Helps us digest food, to mitochondria. The separate bacteria, like powerhouses, that, live in a thousands, in each of ourselves and make up 1/5, of all typical, cell by value, nor. Does all intelligence, keep us from being mind-controlled by something much stupid, or the, influenza, virus is often, considered parasitic. Indeed, it's sometimes, called the perfect parasite, in that it's thought to make people infected with it act more social, thus being around more people and if more of them any. Parasite, that relies on its hosts interacting, with each other to spread benefits. From a more social, species so. For instance one that could cause you to feel drunk might be very effective keep, that one in mind for later as, we'll discuss how alien, beer may, represent, one of the more likely, scenarios, for, being destroyed by aliens and. Yes I did say alien. Beer it. Still seems very unlikely something, could evolve to higher intelligence. By being a parasite let, alone one able to parasite kudos with an alien, biology, however. Here's, three caveats, on that forced. That, impersonation. Pathway, the cuckoo uses benefits. From higher intelligence. And mimicking. A critter doesn't. Necessarily, require compatible. Biochemistry. One, could imagine something taking a chameleon, pathway. Second. A species, that evolved, with technology. Might, no longer act in a way their ancestors, did like, I don't tend to go swing around trees or even chasing mammoths, but it probably shapes their philosophical, outlook and how you'd interact, with them they, might be very predatory, or parasitic. Even, if they weren't openly, hostile. Pearson's, popliteal is from Larry Nivens Ringworld and, known space series are a good example of that especially. As we get to know them they, all initially, described as trisexual. With two genders that are smart and a Thor described, as non-sentient. We. Later find out that it's not really a third gender at all one, fertilizes. Another as normal, who then lays an egg in some unrelated, creature with an overpass door like a wasp this, is also all third caveat, because, while here we see they developed, a close enough relationship with. That species they lay their eggs in two, ago them as part of their race it's, not hard to imagine more, symbiotic, versions, of this interestingly. While. We don't hear much about that egg bailing host species on, saw, the puppeteers. See to their needs the same as a farm or to his livestock, this. Isn't a lovey and warm relationship, but, it is arguably, mutually, beneficial, you. Can also have back and forth evolution, where parasite, and host or symbiote. And host push each other to evil, this, is presumably the case for one of science fiction's best known symbiotic, races, the, trill from stall track that's, a weird evolutionary. Path basically. A big swimming, brain very, Akins the gold from the Stargate, franchise or. They own ice or cousins the symbiotic Tokra, but, let's imagine an advanced form of that fly from olio that gets into ants brains eats, the brain and replicates. Their behavior, we. Often say a good parasite, is one that never actually kills, the host and of course symbiosis relies, on this too so, imagine it didn't quite eat the brain but, hijacked, part of the brain and the nutrient, system feeding it grows, on the ants back like a big hump spawns.
And Flies, off and lays another egg in another lands, over. Time this, could set up a symbiotic relationship with. Feedback encouraging. More intelligence, in both parties, and potentially, the sharing, of sensory, functions, if the, parasite had a better set of eyes for instance to spy its host this. Could get very integrated. With time and increasingly, complex and potentially. Even end, with the host intentionally. And knowingly, transferring. Mature parasites, from, other hosts, and sticking, them on their kids, indeed. Being, able to put a smaadahl, portal wise or parasites, on your kid to act as a babysitter, and teacher would, have some major survival. Advantages, with. This system in place that. Parasite, no longer benefits from having any motive system itself even, to jump on to its host and actually, gains from being smaadahl, and Wisel, and Longo lived since, those would be the preferred babysitters, so. You could end up with something that was a parasite originally. And now, was essentially, nothing but a symbiotic brain, one. Can imagine them eventually becoming a high-tech democracy, that always selected the brain slugs since, everyone was so used to them as a wise, parental. Authority figure, it. Wouldn't be very likely, it could infect another, species let, alone an alien one but, there's some ways around that too forced. For other species the same planet, we often talk in sci-fi about, colony, organisms, or brains, that are essentially networks, of fungus allow Jay, such as the pattern jugglers, in our stove annals revelation, space series, or the Xena fungus, from Sydney Oz Alpha Centauri one. Can imagine those as your Olli brains, in hijacking. Every animal nearby like. That fungus we mentioned that hijack caterpillars. And we, so only have plenty of examples of, plants that already somewhat hijack, many species for, their survival, and reproduction, relying, on them for pollination, or eating, food to be carried away and planted so.
You Might have some algae intelligence, in a pond that hijacked, every fish and frog and insect, to do its bidding, in which case increased. Intelligence is handy since, it lets you better control your minions, in what is now essentially, a hive mind, it, also has every motivation, to kill off any species it can't control, as. To non hive mind alien parasites, that's, how to of course fiction. Has plenty, of examples the. Xenomorphs, from the Alien franchise who. Lay eggs in you that kill you when they hatch again. Like a wasp we. Also had the two units from Warhammer, 40,000. A setting, with plenty of pea sites including. The Emperor of mankind who. Eats a thousand, people every day though. This is all goopy symbiotic. The. Tyranids, are definitely, not symbiotic. But all a bit more subtle than the xenomorph sometimes, by, infecting, people with what they call gene stealer coats hybrids. Initially, raised by infected, parents, whose, brains have been ravaged, so they can't even realize their cute new bundle of joy is a monster, an example. Of a brood parasite, like the cow bored of course. Later the tune is just turn everything biological. On the planet to sue and, reconstituted. Into more portions of themselves, slightly. Evolved from the original, form a more, believable way to parasitize, a whole planet, however. While, they make good fiction its, home to imagine how something from another planet could, ever take over your brain so, much like vampires, another, parasite, of fiction, they, make good stories but, wouldn't seem to possible, but. If you're on alien, planets, it usually, implies you have space travel, which, implies you have technology. You could, engineer yourself to incorporate, biological. Enhancement, possibly. To adapt to a new environment or, even, go post biological. The, Borg from Star Trek would be an example who, act like all algae intelligence, of a moment ago they. Steel body is to act as minions, basically, this. Is actually. An example that, could be a credible, threat to us, given how devotion, we expect to be from aliens, biologically. As a, cyborg, though you wouldn't really need to interact with the divorce Nova systems or biology's of your hosts, you, could in theory simply. Locate, the motor neurons, for the host and puppet, their bodies using electrical, impulses, in much the same way as the Gould did but, not in a biological way, the, host could still be a whale and living, on in their own brains but, unable to interact, with, the outside ward. They, are plenty of other samples, to the vex, from the video game destiny all you even the repose from the Mass Effect franchise. Especially. As allegedly, in the original plot they, will indeed farming and reaping, civilizations. To, Bower their intelligence, or perspective. To solve a problem the. Borg also, steal knowledge assimilating. Cultures and technology, and that's, an example where you might see parasitic, tendencies, in a non-hostile. Body stealing way aliens. Who love knowledge or poetry or alt and visit, planets with emerging, civilizations just. To get theirs either. By open, trade or exploitation. Or outright. Invasion as. We said the term itself originally, meant someone, who eats at the table, of another a mooch, and the, most effective, folks at that sort of behavior are, the ones who make themselves welcome, it's. A bit of a gray line I guess, the analogy would be a travelling, storyteller, who visited foam houses and towards, toys in exchange for a bed and a meal a symbiotic. Behavior. Vocês, one who did that but, bogel their cellar before, leaving but, did so in just Symone of quantity, and covertly. So they didn't notice and cheerfully. Bade him a good trip and welcomed, him back when he next were torned and. Again same, as a parasite might evolved to be fairly noble, a non, parasite. Can certainly exhibit, parasitic, behaviors, like, that story tunnel the, Stargate, franchise gives, us the Gould as an example of parasitic behavior, and the toka as symbiotic. Ones but, also shows us the vampyre eighth and even, the a Shen a society. That essentially, showed up on other planets, and offered, lots of technology, including life extension, technological. Uplifting, but then would wipe out most a local population, through a stability plague, and a one case reduce the natives to fairly simple and backwater, foe Milus who supplied food to the Deo Empire unaware. They'd been victims, of that Empire, indeed. You might suddenly invade a planet in stages, that way by, offering them a genetically, modified cup that was much more productive, that you could also eat and whose, pollen, who endured people stupid or or less for tile this. Is a common, theme in fiction - aliens. Openly, greet us rather, than sneaking in Hoff was technology, but. Have an ulterior, motive the. Tailings from Gene Roddenberry's, both final, conflict show, up on earth doing nothing but good deeds but, while not implied to be evil as a species, by any means have, a lot of rather dog projects, and memos one.
Of Which was a symbiote, they give people that shot energy, blasts and another, Cody Seibel, viral implant that enhanced cognition, and recall, but, also tampered with your mind to make you loyal to them so. They are friendly alien visitors with, sinister, plots that can. Go the other way too in, another, TV show threshold. There, is an apparently, evil invader base taking, people as grains oval but, it's hinted near the end they, might be trying to help us out, sadly. We don't get to find out as it's only at one season in spite, of having Brett data spinal, and Peter Tyrion, Dinklage in it but. While we can point out the options technology. Offers to let you get around the alien issue we, also shouldn't discount that something might be able to get us as a parasite, even, if it wasn't technological. You, don't necessarily need, the same biochemistry, or adaptation. To a specific, host organism, to puppet or impersonate, someone while. Life probably originated, on earth, deep-sea vents or tidal pools we. Can't rule out panspermia. Life. Distributed, around the cosmos by comets, or interstellar, dust committing a common, basic, biochemistry. Moreover. While, we can't rule out alternate, chemistry's, for life it's, quite possible, all carbon, and water approach is the only viable one and is, almost certainly, the easiest and, most common, one those, elements being way too common, in places with, as plausible conditions, for advanced, in divorce, life, now. We, often say here that you wouldn't want to ever land on an alien planet even. In a spacesuit since. Just sneezing, could infect a planet to the point of total extinction, in, favor of what you had in you however. We're, not really talking about viruses, the, simplest parasite, and, one usually so adapted, and simplified, it can't even infect a species, just, a few million years removed, from its before host hence, why you don't often get colds, from your cat or dog but. It can happen more. Importantly, microbes. In your body not viruses. Just, need basic nutrients. One's probably present on most life-bearing, planets. Giant. Viruses could, theoretically bridge, that gap however with, more than double the amount of genes of their smaller cousins they are often mistaken, for bacteria. As example. Their Pandora, virus, is a huge, virus, with over 2,000, genes most, of which we haven't found anywhere, else on earth and. Many viruses have the ability to survive in the harsh conditions of space often, raining, back down on us from above with. More genes and divorce tea than smaller viruses, the potential, for them to torn symbiotic. And or parasitic, is there, and. The Pandora virus, isn't, even the largest almost, divorce the. More specialized, a cell is generally. The less a DAT board is in changing, conditions however, these, large viruses, are so divorced who knows in what conditions, or species. They may one day call home, one. Way that such a virus, could infect divorce hosts, is if it is designed to do just that, this. Ties into alien abductions, where, an alien race survives, to play, collect samples, from its local flora and fauna and then sets about designing a doomsday genetic. Weapon that is capable of wiping out every species on that planet or at, least the intelligent, ones if. You design a big enough genome, and have a powerful enough computer, to design such a weapon I think you could pull that off this. Is similar to the shadows plague virus in the Babylon 5 universe. That, decimated, earth and destroyed, many other walls he. Was animated, in that had a parasitic, loading phase where, it quietly, infected, its host and loan, from the physiology of its victims without, actually, harming them and then, adapt itself before dealing, the final, deadly infection, phase that, quickly wiped its hosts out the. Shadows, in the Babylon 5 series. Also had a mind controlling puppeteer, caught a draw keeper, that they modified, to the biology, of the host and infected.
Them To do their bidding in a more traditional paler, side role so. You will probably never shake hands with an alien since, you'll both be potentially, walking plague carriers, and their, embassy if they have one in your system at all might, be on an island but, much more likely won't, even, be on the planet but on a space station with. Enough technology in play people, could presumably visit, and maybe eat the food which, of course they would if they could not. Only would people want to try exotic, alien cuisine, on general principle, but big an expansive, empires tend, to have the best selection, they'll, also fairly likely try the booze to which, aliens, might well have so, the diplomats, and traders are likely, to be up there in person and eat, and drink the stuff even. If it requires decontamination. Procedures, on your guts by some device of an unsettling, tentacular, nature, when, they get home they, are likely to rave about how excellent it was probably. Even if it wasn't of course, you can't let anything with a live course or down on a planet, and you need to be sure all the microbes, are gone you. Don't want those microbes, down here and the aliens might well be smart and benevolent, folks who don't want that either you. Could in theory, brew, up bats of B or yogurt, or cheese using. Alien, microbes, and maybe safely, by having the play the off ward or like a biohazard, lab but. Odds are it would be banned on general, principle, now. As everyone, knows the. Only thing that makes a cigar or drink better is if it comes for a place under embargo, and sanction, and let's, be honest if someone, offered you a forbidden, alien beer, you're. Going to have a rough time saying no and, aren't likely to report them, this, also means there is now a black market, for it only anyone supplying it isn't, likely remaking it in an autosave, biohazard. Land but, rather brewing it up in their bathtub, like moonshine, so, next thing you know you've, been invaded, by aliens, and your ecosystem wrecked, not, because they are parasitic, or bad guys but, because someone couldn't resist having a drink and who, can blame them, alien, beer is to, die for. Alright, so, some food for thought about alien ecosystems, and parasitic, aliens, personally. I don't think we need to worry about it much even. Ignoring my usual skepticism. About us encountering, any alien civilizations, at all because, I do think brain bugs or mimics able, to originate, in alien ecosystems. But, still get humans, is a pretty unlikely evolutionary. Scenario. Biologically. Or culturally. This. Is especially true when it comes to the divorce of biological, systems even heal on our own home planets and other plants will likely be so much different, form alone however. It's, not something, we can completely, rule out, regardless. It definitely, makes for some good stories and one the best of those is john w campbell as classic, novella who, goes there which, inspired, so many stories in spite, of being a classic, that's been toned into popular films, many times the, story varies, from them quite a lot and is, not one we can discuss without ruinous, spoil of those so. I'll limit myself to saying you'll, still be surprised even, if you've seen all the film adaptations, and you, will quickly realize why. John w campbell is considered, one of the grandfather's. Of science fiction whose, walk explores. So many fascinating, concepts. You, can get a free copy of who goes there today just, use my link in this episode's description, audible.com, slash, Isaak, or text, Isaak - 500, - 500 to, get a free book and a 30-day free trial, and that book. Is yours, to keep whether you stay on with audible or not and while, you're there you can explore they'll catalog, and find some more books you can listen to and enjoy while. Still out enjoying, your summer, so. We talked a lot about alien, biology, and Earth's biology, and next week we'll be taking a deeper look at ecology, in space as, you consider how you would we large and complete, colonies, on interstellar. Ships to, colonize, other walls, in exporting. North we. Also talked today about alien, invasions, and we'll be looking at that and other futuristic, warfare scenarios, in two weeks when, we examine, the use of drones remote, controlled and autonomous, as weapons, in attack. Of the drones for. Lords when those and other episodes come out make. Sure to subscribe to the channel and if you enjoyed this episode hit. The like button and share with others, until. Next time thanks, for watching and have, a great week.