In b4… ah fuhgeddaboudit.
I wonder if it would be quicker just to list the animals that wouldn’t do well against zombies. Otherwise I fear this is going to be a looong series of posts.
Qui enim manducat et vobismet immortui?
[?Who eats the eaters of zombies?]
Every one of these posts has 'But but, if X ate Zombies, X would become a zombie X.
I think I speak for everyone who has ever played Resident Evil when I voice certain reservations about possible risks associated with the potential for cross-species transmission of zombieism to the coyote population…
Zombie vs Sloth, Zombie vs Panda, Zombie vs Sponge
Does the National Wildlife Federation offer verifiable assurances that our donations will NOT be misappropriated to benefit wildlife that itself has transitioned into a zombiefied state? The very LAST thing I want to do is encourage & support the “undead” of any stripe; coyotes, buzzards, Ted Cruz, the Koch brother, etc.
Animals are petty badly outnumbered; I hope their kill ratio is at least 10:1 or so. http://xkcd.com/1338/
Just wait until the zombie apocalypse reaches New Zealand … The kakapos will shag the zombies heads off …
Why are zombies such amazing ambush killers despite their apparent degraded senses, and why aren’t they easily ambushed instead? I mean, shouldn’t a live person be able to distract them just by jingling their house keys in front of them while someone else sneaks up behind the zombie with a crowbar?
According to unimpeachably reliable sources, we should be able to count on some nontrivial assistance from the livestock…
An individual zombie is trivial to kill by a human – that is established by every example of zombie fiction. The problem is when a human is faced by hundreds of zombies – which is the situation presented by most zombie fiction where 99% of the population has been converted to zombies.
My impression is that (aside from pure narrative causality) it’s a mixture of certain convenient abilities, their bio-hazardous nature, and sheer attrition.
When you don’t need to breath or maintain a heartbeat, and are free from petty concerns like ‘stubborn need to sneeze and/or scratch an itch while lying in wait’; you can turn in a dangerously adequate performance as an ambush predator where your intelligence and sensory capabilities would consign an equivalent human to lousiness.
That aside, the big factor seems to be the sheer risk of melee combat with zombies. Absolute best case (stories where infection isn’t an issue and the zombies have to kill you the old fashioned way) you are fighting something of roughly human strength, substandard intelligence; but without vulnerability to pain, shock, or blood loss. With surprise and a weapon your odds are good; but probably not good enough to off the zombie horde one by one(even assuming you never get unlucky and discover that there were more than you expected).
Intermediate case (eg. World War Z) fluid contact doesn’t seem to be a big deal; but you are So Screwed if one lands a bite on you. The situation is as above; but there are rather more errors that you do not get to recover from.
Worst case (eg. 28 Days Later) fluid contact with mucous membranes or broken skin is lethal, which really narrows your options. Especially against a target that doesn’t feel pain or go into shock, substantial, gory, tissue disruption is going to be unavoidable; but the necessary personal protective equipment will take a severe toll on your stamina, situational awareness, and mobility.
I can’t think of any stories where aerosolized-zombie-brain inhalation was rigoriously tracked, probably doing so would be deeply tedious and more or less doom the plucky survivors, since it turns the canonical massive-head-trauma zombie takedown from a triumph to particularly ghastly Pyrrhic victory. (Incidentally, breathing aerosolized brains is not recommended even in non-zombie contexts)
If the usual workings of the carbon cycle are anything to go by, probably me and my colleagues, with some help from those slacker prokaryotes.
Zombies don’t actually change the game that much: you do get a substantial uptick in human biomass entering the decay phase (as the normal daily death rate is supplemented by decaying zombie hordes and the massive piles of the dead that accumulate as panic and violence spread and basic logistical, sanitation, and medical services break down; but these ‘body boomers’ are going to follow the same basic path as all the dead people before them, just with bigger class sizes than usual.
Revises bucket list.
Of course they can. With one zombie. Now try distracting 150 zombies while someone sneaks up behind them with a crowbar and brains all 150 of them.
That’d work quite well, provided you’re in a situation where a great many walking torches spreading the flames around isn’t going to be a problem.
I think you’re meant to be reading the text, not looking at the flamethrower.
We’d be on the longer list. We’re rather good at killing things that are smart, fast and have a strong survival instinct. Killing slow, stupid things with no survival instinct is substantially less of a problem.