WTF!: Thousands Of Ants Form Hanging Body-Bridge To Attack Wasp Nest

August 8, 2018

This is a video from Brazil captured by electrical engineer Francisco Boni of a hanging ant bridge loosely spanning its way to a wasp nest for an attack. No word what those wasps did to warrant the attack, but I'd like to know so I can make sure I never do the same thing myself. In Francisco's own words while I cover myself in Raid like spray sunscreen:

"Attack of legionary ants (also known as army ants or marabunta) to a wasp honeycomb. Impressive the level of swarm intelligence and collective computation to form that bridge."


"When this type of attack happens, the wasps usually escape and the ants do not leave until they've completely looted the honeycomb, carrying pupae, larvae and eggs, as well as some adults who did not manage to escape. They can even build across the water!"

"For ants, it is more effective to follow the trail over a bridge that goes down and then up than in an inverted upside down walk."

"Also likely that upside down the ants can't carry significant loads."

Man, that's nuts. I suggest we just hand the world over before ants decide to fight us for it. Maybe they'll let us work in their fungus gardens or something. Speaking of less terrifying ants and bridges: my aunt has been trying to teach me how to play bridge when she comes over for dinner Sunday nights. "Great tie-in, GW." Thanks! "I'm joking, you're an idiot." I do always yell Uno.

Keep going for the video.

Thanks to MSA, who agrees the best bridges lead to the heart of someone special. Or treehouses.

  • TheQiwiMan

    Anyone else reminded of this?
    https://cdn-images-1.medium...

  • Jenness

    Gahhhh!!

  • adsffda
  • Jenness

    I used to play this!!!

  • Meh

    Nice, let them go to war with each other any day.

  • Andyman7714

    Why aren't ants ruling the world yet?

  • The_Wretched

    No thumbs.

  • Munihausen

    They do, kinda.

  • GeneralDisorder

    I think it's time to burn the house down.

  • Munihausen

    Those poor wasps?

  • TheQiwiMan

    F wasps right in the B

  • Darren McCoy

    Said no one EVER!

  • Jenness

    NO ONE!!!

  • Elak Swindell

    But why form the weird hanging bridge instead of just walking upside-down across the underside of the roof like a normal ant would do? Seems like a lot of unnecessary work on their part to create this construct.

  • adsffda

    maybe this kind of ant isn't so good at walking upsidedown and is good at making bridges

  • adsffda

    probably helps with looting. easy enough to go upsdiedown if they just want to kill the wasps, but probably can't carry back dead wasp sections and larva when sticking to the ceiling

    although then I still don't get why they made it so long and floppy instead of trying for something more diagonal, that's a long way to climb up carrying something heavy too

  • Mark

    My guess is that they were walking across the ceiling with a bridge of some sort and it lost connection...dropping down.

  • Geekologie

    "For ants, it is more effective to follow the trail over a bridge that goes down and then up than in an inverted upside down walk."

    "Also likely that upside down the ants can't carry significant loads."

    No clue if that's true or not, but I half believe it, especially the looting part.

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