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New Species Of 'Exploding Ant' Discovered In Borneo

New Species Of 'Exploding Ant' Discovered In Borneo

An worldwide team of researchers has now discovered a new species of these exploding ants. When threatened, it explodes, covering intruders with sticky, toxic liquid.

Some ants are real kamikazes.

Laciny and her colleagues identified some 15 distinct species of exploding ants, with the canopy-dwelling Colobopsis explodens singled out as the prototypical species of the group, meaning it will serve as a reference and comparison point for future research into exploding ants. Their findings were published Thursday in the journal ZooKeys.

Alice Laciny, an entomologist with the Natural History Museum in Vienna, and project researcher told National Geographic that the lethal goo smells bizarrely similar to curry.

To defend themselves, some of these hymenoptera do not hesitate, in a way, to make a hara-kiri: they tear up their abdomen to spread on their enemy, previously trapped, a viscous and yellowish mixture, particularly toxic, and thus able to slow down their opponent enough, or even kill it for good.

This self-destructing behaviour of the ants was first mentioned in 1916, but no new species have been described since 1935, as reported by Phys.org.

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It also seems to be reserved for social insects, such as termites or even bees. With the explosion of insects nabryzgivajut enemy poisonous entrails and slime. Worker ants can choose to rupture their abdominal wall to ward off or kill enemies.

Scientists have known about exploding ants for over a hundred years.

For some workers, of higher rank, the role of defense turns out to be quite different.

If an insect survives the minor worker's goo attack, it must then try to negotiate a way past one of these major workers, identifiable by their enlarged heads. Scientists say just "minor workers", including all sterile females, are blessed with the capability, while the remaining members offer up other defensive tricks.

"It is still not clear why they are doing this, but we already discovered several new species of very interesting fungi that are growing on this foliage". The Australian ant Camponotus anderseni has a habit of building its nest on the beaches. This gives them a very sci-fi alien look. Stand down, because you are no longer the worst type of ant out there.


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