Neurologists at Northern Michigan University have released a study that confirms the ability to capture the final brain activity of most insects at the moments just before death.
Working predominantly with Black Flies, a species that can outnumber the entire human population in a town as small as Newberry Michigan, Professor Haywood Jabuzov, Russian immigrant and director of insect neural studies at NMU, says that brain activity heightens as stress is introduced to the insect.
"If a fly for example, knows he is about to be swatted, that sudden introduction of stress spikes the fly's adrenalin and also his brain activity. The neural activity is so intense, we can pick up on those small brain waves with our external monitors", says Jabuzov. No one was willing to ask a follow up question because Jabuzov, who hadn't showered or shaved or changed his formerly white lab coat in days, was creeping everyone out.
NMU's study also shows repeating patterns of brain activity for certain pre-death stress situations. Translating the patterns, Dr. Jabuzov says that an English equivalent can be offered for illustration purposes. "Of course, they can't speak English, but their neural responses indicate a sophisticated form of communication."
If the test fly is about to be swatted from above and escapes to the right, the neural translation, according to Jabuzov, is "Oh Sh*t, TURN RIGHT". Similarly, if the fly escapes to the left the translation would be, "Oh Sh*t, TURN LEFT". If the fly is successfully swatted, it's simply "Oh, Sh*t". For other tests using electronic pest control, the response is slightly different, translating to something like, "Pretty blue light, AARGH".
Jabuzov admits that the studies are incomplete and that his department could use more government funding. Critics ask why anyone should care what a pest's final thoughts are. "So long as their dead" said one reporter. Baiting Jabuzov with additional sarcastic questions, one reporter snickered, "Hey Doc, if you're so smart, what's the last thing to go through a bug's mind when he hits my car's windshield?"
"His arsehole", replied Jabuzov.