New ant species from Borneo explodes to defend its colony

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  • April 19, 2018
  • Amongst the countless fascinating plants and animals inhabiting the tropical rainforests of Southeast Asia, there are the spectacular “exploding ants”, a group of arboreal, canopy dwelling ants nicknamed for their unique defensive behaviour. When threatened by other insects, minor workers can actively rupture their body wall. Apart from leading to the ants’ imminent death, the […]

    Heat-loving Australian ants believe in diversity, hint 74 species new to science

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  • September 21, 2017
  • The ‘furnace ants’ or ‘honeypot ants’ present a very large genus of ants, Melophorus, confined to Australia. Long believed to be megadiverse, some scientists have even suggested that the group may contain ‘well over 1000 species’. However, to this point, only 32 species and subspecies had been described. Scientists Dr Brian Heterick of Curtin University, Dr Mark Castalanelli of Ecodiagnostics Pty […]

    Rarely-seen event of ant brood parasitism by scuttle flies video-documented

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  • January 31, 2017
  • While many species of scuttle flies are associated with ants, their specific interactions with their hosts are largely unknown. Brood parasitism (attacking the immature stages, rather than the adult ants), for example, is an extremely rarely observed and little-studied phenomenon. However, a research team from the USA and Brazil, led by Dr. Brian Brown, Natural […]