The bug you didn’t know you were eating

An insect native to the Oaxaca region of Mexico, the cochineal spends most of its life feeding on cacti nutrients. While, from a human point of view, these parasitic insects may have somewhat unremarkable lives, they’ve long captured our attention for the unmatched brilliance of the crimson hue produced by their hemolymph – the arthropod equivalent to blood, which in most insects is clear. Captured in stunning 4K resolution, this video from the science documentary series Deep Look captures the fascinating biology of these small creatures, as well as how female cochineal have been cultivated for centuries, and can still be used in food colourings today.

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