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Ants in the Jungles of Borneo mutilate themselves to destroy their invaders.

April 19, 2018

 

Anyone who's accidentally stood on an ant nest will know just how good they are at defending their home, but a new species of "exploding ant" takes it to the next level.

When confronted by an enemy insect, these tree-dwellers latch onto their foe, tear open their own body wall and release yellow toxic goo onto their rival, slowing or killing it.

And while this "explosion" doesn't exactly blow them to bits, it also spells the end for the defending ant, said Alice Laciny, a PhD student at the Natural History Museum in Vienna.

She and her colleagues discovered the new species, dubbed Colobopsis explodens, in the rainforests of Borneo and their findings were published today in the journal ZooKeys.

Posted on 19-Apr-2018

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