Ants are among the most extreme creatures out there, as they are ready to go really far to protect the safety of their colony. A new report has recently surfaced about a unique species of exploding ants that have won the title for the most intense way to take care of their nest.
The exploding ants sacrifice themselves for the community
Everyone is aware that ants can have odd behaviors whenever they feel threatened. This explains why so many people are afraid of ants and their painful bites. Now, researchers stumbled upon some fierce exploding ants that wage war on their enemies whenever they feel like they are under attack.
During a fight between these ants and their enemies, they jump on top of the adversary and ‘explode’. More precisely, they split themselves open and let their insides flow over the enemies. Then, they smear them with a yellow substance than can make them move slower, and can often be deadly.
This is a new species, but it can earn a place on the exciting list of other exploding ants. The discovery is quite remarkable, as it’s the first time since 1935 when researchers find a new species of the sorts. After finding out what this is about, you might think it’s not that spectacular.
The behavior is common for social insects
Of course, exploding ants produce no actual explosion. However, the behavior is so extreme that the ant performing the attack kills itself to save the others. Now, you might think of kamikaze pilots or, if you want another example from nature, a stinging bee.
According to the researchers, this suicidal behavior is found only in insects with strong social characteristics. They are the only ones that are willing to sacrifice their own lives for the sake of the community. A colony of exploding ants acts like a single entity, and the main purpose of the smaller individuals is to kill themselves whenever they are under attack.
Researchers published a study on the exploding ants, scientifically called Colobopsis explodens. The study can be found in the journal ZooKeys.
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