Venom Injection Ants
The Florida harvester ant, also known as the Pogonomyrmex badius, basically increase seed dispersal and protection, while providing nutrients that increase seedling survival of the desert plants. They also provide soil aeration through the creation of galleries / chambers, mix deep / upper layers of soil, and incorporate organic refuse into the soil. Dr. Adrian Smith from the Evolutionary Biology & Behavior Research Lab at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences shows how its venom injection works. Read more for a slow-motion video captured at 1,000 frames per second.



In addition to the Florida harvester ant, the trap-jaw ant Odontomachus ruginodis is also featured in the video above. The latter boasts a pair of large, straight mandibles capable of opening 180°. An internal mechanism locks the jaws in place and can snap shut on prey or objects when sensory hairs on the inside of the mandibles are touched.