Credits: Mark Moffett
1 AMAZON ANTS pillage free-living ant colonies for slaves. Here a slave (
grey) in Lake Tahoe, Calif., helps carry booty of its masters -- the Amazon ants which pillage free-living ant colonies for fresh slaves. Mark Moffett
2 SUICIDE BOMBER ANT (
right) in Brunei, Borneo explodes and spews out a toxic yellow glue when contacting an enemy, killing both ants instantly. Mark Moffett
3 WEAVER ANTS (
right) attack a much stronger and tougher army ant in Ghana, Africa. The weaver ants control and protect large territories, whereas the army ants are nomadic, seeking victims on the run. Mark Moffett
4 HONEYPOT ANTS in Arizona circle each other in a ritualized "stilting" form of battle that generally results in low mortality for the relatively small colonies of this species.
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5 MARAUDER ANT minor workers attack a
Diacamma ant that made the mistake of blundering onto their trail. These small workers will be able to pin down the larger Diacamma, then a marauder ant major worker will arrive to kill the enemy in its crushing mandibles. Mark Moffett
6 TRAP-JAW ANT worker in Costa Rica defends herself and larvae against an army ant by shooting venom at the intruder.
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Ants engage in large-scale battles that in many ways call to mind human warfare. Entomologist and photographer Mark Moffett describes their bellicose behaviors in his article in the December issue of
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