Matabele ants (Megaponera analis) in sub-Saharan Africa apply an antimicrobial substance to nestmates whose limbs are lost while raiding termite nests
12 May 2022
An African ant seems to be the only known species, besides humans, that can diagnose infected wounds and treat them with antimicrobial medicine.
Matabele ants (Megaponera analis) are relatively large insects found in sub-Saharan Africa that raid termite nests for food. This is risky because termite nests are defended by soldiers that can bite the ants, tearing off their limbs in up to a fifth of cases.
Erik Frank at the University of Würzburg in Germany previously observed that Matabele ants that …