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Cone Snail Stuns, Eats Fish Using Insulin
By Angela Messina, January 20, 2015 @ 07:45 PM (EST)
Source: National Geographic

The toxic geographic cone snail (Conus geographus) is the most poisonous of all the cone snails and stuns and eats its prey using clouds of insulin. New research was reported this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Cone snails are too slow to catch their prey, so they resort to using clouds of toxins containing insulin to cause passing fish’s sugar levels to plummet. After a fish is immobilized, the snail reaches out with a “false mouth” (a cape-like apparatus) which envelopes the fish and drags it into the snail’s mouth where it is stung with another set of toxins to insure it’s completely stunned before it’s eaten.

The cone snail is the only known animal to use insulin to kill and the geographic cone snail has even killed several humans.

Read more here and watch a video of the geographic cone snail at work below.




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