Trap-jaw Ants Use Mandibles Not Only to Attack, But to Escape

Some species of trap-jaw ants may use their spring-loaded mandibles to hurl themselves out of harm’s way when an ant-trapping predator stalks them, according to a study published in the journal PLOS ONE by Fredrick Larabee and Andrew Suarez from the University of Illinois. This dramatic maneuver doubles the ants’ survival when other escape methods […]

Big-headed Ants Are Biggest in Australia Due to Competition

The big-headed ant (Pheidole megacephala) is considered one of the world’s worst invasive ant species. As the name implies, its colonies include soldier ants with disproportionately large heads. Their giant, muscle-bound noggins power their biting parts, the mandibles, which they use to attack other ants and cut up prey. In a new study, researchers report […]