Sunday Night Movie: OOGPISTER!

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Another gem from Attenborough’s “Life” series:

Plus, I’ll give a bonus Myrmecos point to the first person to identify the ants to species.

10 thoughts on “Sunday Night Movie: OOGPISTER!”

  1. Anthia! I had no idea it had a common name, let alone one that awesome.
    Bonus fun fact: those white patches are highly UV-reflective, a shining example of broad-spectrum aposematism.

    1. According to my father (a South African) oogpister is Afrikaans for eye pisser. A perfectly appropriate (and awesome) name!

  2. Hi,
    although I have been an enthusiastic reader of this blog for several years now, this is the first time to post something.
    The ants look like Anoplolepis custodiens to me. I am not 100% sure since formicines are not my favorite group, but I’ll give it a try.

  3. Gosh, if this were in South America, I’d say something in the Camponotus blandus group, maybe crispulus.

    Cool movie, anyway. I love the incipient evolution of mimicry by the lizard! Also cool, how adept the beetle is at dealing with the fiesty ants.

  4. I just watched the American version of this last week, narrated by Oprah, of all people. Same shots, same script. (I think I like Sir Attenborough’s style better.)

  5. The way the oogpister kicked off/away ants was pretty impressive.

    I am a complete amateur but, does anyone know the concentration of the formic acid the oogpister sprays?

  6. Not to question Sir David, but I wondered about the formic acid thing. Carabid beetles have all sorts of nasty chemicals that they elaborate all by themselves and squirt at enemies. I’d like to understand the mechanism for transferring formic acid from prey to their own abdominal glands. Watching the beetle eat the ant, I had the impression, in fact, that it was squeezing all or most of the venom out before eating.

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