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Scientists Discover Breed of Exploding Termites

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posted on Jul, 28 2012 @ 07:49 PM
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A new breed of termite has been discovered that causes an explosion on it's back when it's colony is under threat. It's amazing how nature creates such defensive mechanisms in creatures like this. It's very interesting that these termites have developed the technique of "suicide bombing" to defend their colony. I guess we should be thankful that this defensive measure isn't a common theme within the animal kingdom.

Source





A team of scientists has discovered a new species of termite that defends itself by exploding when a nest is invaded.


They have found that the termites, known as Neocapritermes taracua, have a blue spot on their backs which contains explosive crystals that are used to carry out suicide attacks. The explosive termites have shorter, worn-down mandibles compared with others from the same species, indicating that they are older, according to the findings published in Science Journal.

The new termites were discovered during a scientific expedition to the forests of French Guiana. The scientists noticed blue spots on the back of the insects in one nest. When a scientist picked up one of the termites with a pair of tongs, it exploded.



Scientists started observing the behaviour of the termites after their first sighting. They found that the blue spots explode during hostile encounters with other species. The explosion will kill or paralyse a rival termite.

To understand exactly how the explosive mechanism works, scientists conducted lab experiments on the termites, removed the blue pouch to examine its contents. They found that blue crystals contain a protein that is unusually rich in copper.



Here's a video of the Termites. It doesn't show the actual explosion, only the pouch expanding.




posted on Jul, 28 2012 @ 08:09 PM
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Nature is just awesome,

now we have suicidal termites for the us government to put on the terror watch list



posted on Jul, 28 2012 @ 08:12 PM
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We humans like to think we are the absolute top of the food chain.
Imagine if these termites were the size of a human.



posted on Jul, 28 2012 @ 08:13 PM
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It never ceases to amaze what nature can create.

I wish i could gather up a jar full and throw them at my buddy.



posted on Jul, 28 2012 @ 08:52 PM
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Woooooow!

Hope these guys never get mutated to where they were huge!

Tap on your wall check for termites only to have it explode on you!



posted on Jul, 28 2012 @ 09:10 PM
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these termites prefer the Quran 10:1 over any other source of wood fiber




posted on Jul, 28 2012 @ 09:12 PM
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Originally posted by iforget
these termites prefer the Quran 10:1 over any other source of wood fiber



Totally inappropriate an unnecessary.



posted on Jul, 28 2012 @ 09:22 PM
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Oh my God, I don't know wether to scream or puke! Those things are hideous!



posted on Jul, 28 2012 @ 11:25 PM
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yeah, there are a breed of ants, and at least one other breed of termite which do the same thing.

en.wikipedia.org...

interesting in terms of evolution, if you consider that the ones who would evolve this trait would also be the ones exploding themselves.
edit on 28-7-2012 by stanguilles7 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 28 2012 @ 11:28 PM
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S & F


I'm still waiting to see these "Nano-Termites" I keep hearing about though.



posted on Jul, 29 2012 @ 12:04 AM
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Originally posted by SLAYER69
S & F


I'm still waiting to see these "Nano-Termites" I keep hearing about though.


Maybe, but it's the "Nano-TerMATEs" that are the more advanced, hideous type.



posted on Jul, 29 2012 @ 12:24 PM
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Impressive.
It'd be cool to see at least a simulation of the process at the molecular level, that's hot stuff.



Originally posted by CaveCanem

Originally posted by iforget
these termites prefer the Quran 10:1 over any other source of wood fiber



Totally inappropriate an unnecessary.

But completely unavoidable.




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