Drhoz! (drhoz) wrote in wtf_nature,
Drhoz!
drhoz
wtf_nature

Kaboom!

In response to the Exploding Ant post - yes, I'm gradually working my way back, hopefully I won't have too many other reposts -

Globitermes sulphureus, the exploding termite.

Given the sheer number of termites (in Australian ecosystems they take the place of Wildebeest herds, and other large herbivores) and species thereof, it's not surprising that they've invented many different ways to protect their nests from all the things that want to eat them. And from each other.



Many species have soldier castes with enormous jaws, and most bang their heads vigorously against the wall to summon reinforcements (curious to listen to, when you're working under a house investigating the extent of an infestation, and when you tap at the wall it taps back).

Other simply plug the hole in the defences with their own heads, until the workers can seal it off.

Some species go further. Nasutitermes sprays glue from a nozzle on their foreheads.

And Globitermes grabs an enemy in it's big curvy jaws, and explodes. aka "Suicidal defensive behaviour by frontal gland dehiscence in Globitermes sulphureus. The result is a dead termite and an invader glued to the spot.
Tags: australia, exploding ant, explosions, globitermes sulphureus, insect, nasutitermes, termite, video
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