Prior Bugs (R75)

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Prior Bugs (R75)

Summary

The Prior Bugs were sent by the Priors of the Ori to planets in their attempt to convert the people to Origin, the religion of the Ori. The SGC gathered specimens to study at their Gamma Site research facility and designated them with the project code of R75. (9.17 "The Scourge")

Stargate References

Click on the image for a larger version of the concept art by James Robbins
Dr. Myers was the principal entomologist studying the specimens and designated the project R75. He was assisted in his efforts by Dr. Pullman. Both scientists were assigned to the off-world Gamma Site to conduct their studies.

The bugs appear to have hard black shells, similar to dung beetles (aka scarab beetles), however, they don't appear to have the six legs that an insect would have. Instead, their locomotion appears to be driven by muscular ventral segments. Primarily a burrowing creature, R75 eat plants from the roots up and use echo-location to determine the proximity of their enemies. Although they can function during daylight, they prefer the darkness.

The lifespans of R75 were extremely short, living only a few hours when they had plantlife available for consumption, but when deprived of sustenance, they lived at least three days. Dr. Myers experimented with starving R75 to see how long they could live without eating. After three days of starvation, he offered them plant material, but they refused it. Curious to see what the bugs would do if he offered them meatloaf from his lunch plate, Dr. Myers offered a containment unit with several R75 a bite's worth. To his amazement, the bugs pounced enthusiastically on the food and consumed it. Dr. Myers had to leave the bugs for a moment, but when he and Dr. Pullman returned, the bugs had multiplied so rapidly that there was no more room in the containment unit. Hundreds of R75 burst forth and started to scurry across the floor, but Myers quickly activated the biohazard evacuation process which sucked the entire lot into disposal units, presumably chopping their bodies into little pieces as part of their disposal protocol. One bug, however, got loose and bit Dr. Myers before he crushed it under his shoe.

A few hours later, Dr. Myers fell ill. He collapsed and was placed into a portable isolation chamber for transportation back to Earth through the Stargate. They didn't have adequate medical facilities at the Gamma Site to treat him. As the SFs began to lift him to take through the Stargate, Myers stirred, and to the SFs' horror, a bug came out of his mouth. They dropped the chamber and it broke open, and soon a mass of bugs evacuated Myers's body and took over the 'gate room. Realizing that R75 were converted into carnivores, base commander Col. Pearson ordered that the 'gate room be evacuated before all the people in there were overcome.

R75 ate their humans quickly, leaving nothing but clothing behind. A mass of them could consume a grown man in seconds. The bugs took over the Gamma Site's computer systems and eventually, the self-destruct protocol was activated and the Gamma Site was completely destroyed.

There were some survivors of the bugs' invasion of the base: SG-1, two SFs, and the four members of the International Oversight Advisory (IOA) who just so happened to be on a tour of the base when the bugs got loose. SG-1 was ordered to see to the IOA members' safety, so they left the base and headed for a research facility which was approximately 10 kilometers away through dense forest. During their trek, they heard a high-pitched buzzing sound and realized that R75 were using their echo-location to find their prey. One of the SFs was consumed by the swarm within seconds, his horrific death witnessed by the others who stood only a few feet from him.

The group found refuge from R75 in a rocky cave. SG-1 and the remaining SF took turns guarding the entrance to the cave and firing their weapons on the ground to scare the creatures off. Unfortunately, the SF had become an incubator for the bugs just as Myers had been, and soon, only SG-1 and the IOA committee members remained. Mitchell and Teal'c hoped to return to the base to get the F-302s so that they could leave the area, but the aircraft were destroyed when the base self-destructed.

The SGC had attempted to contact the Gamma Site and found that R75 had taken over the 'gate room before the base was destroyed. Dr. Bill Lee was tasked with coming up with a poison to kill the bugs so that they could salvage anything left at the Site. Knowing CR-91 protocol, SG-1 realized that they had very little time before the poison was released by the Odyssey. The group felt their only hope was to make it to the research facility and alter the radio transmitters to broadcast a signal to alert the Odyssey that there were survivors. The radio transmitters, however, attracted the bugs as well. The transmission was successful and the IOA members who were inside the building were beamed out safely. After depleting all of their ammunition, SG-1 stood only inches away from the horde before they were transported safely off the planet as well.

Presumably, all living things were killed by the poison sent to the planet by the Odyssey. The group of bugs at the Gamma Site were not the only bugs in existence, however. The SGC determined that they were indeed sent by the Priors as a reaction to the SGC's finding a cure to the Prior Plague. Originally, R75's connection to the Priors was only supposition, but after the bugs appeared on two more planets visited by Priors, the connection was made obvious. When they first found the bugs, SGC wanted to alter them so that they would only go after the Lucian Alliance's kassa crops, but now the goal of R&D is to find a way to kill the bugs without harming other plant and animal life.

Episodes

Gallery

R75 in their containment unit
Dr. Myers watches in amazement as R75 eat his meatloaf
R75 break out of containment
R75 burst forth from Dr. Myers's corpse
R75 devour SF
SG-1 defend the cave

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--DeeKayP 18:29, 3 July 2006 (PDT)