Sunday Night Movie: Ant v Spider

I can do without the sensationalized narration and the lion sounds pasted to the spider, but this video shows a couple notable behaviors:

First, notice how numbers trump size. An ant colony sacrifices a single worker, but the biomass gain from a single spider more than compensates their loss. Ants are dominant, among other reasons, because social insects can hunt in ways solitary animals simply can’t.

Second, if you’ve ever wondered why Myrmecia sport such toothy jaws, here’s your answer. The mandibles double-duty for holding and slicing large prey:

Finally, that slow-motion jump is the most awesome thing I’ve seen since roller derby.

14 thoughts on “Sunday Night Movie: Ant v Spider”

  1. agreed on the slo-mo jump
    that is the most amazing bug footage i’ve seen in a long time
    did what i do with many bug vids: muted it
    caught bryan’s wrist action tho. let’s say he’s been drafted 🙂

  2. “Ants are dominant, among other reasons, because social insects can hunt in ways solitary animals simply can’t.”

    quite true. big brain + group hunting = homo sapiens (unprecedented extinction)
    #winning http://is.gd/sj9exj #tillthenextmeteoranyway

  3. Is that an evil, invasive Vespula germanica being dewinged by an Australian Myrmecia?

    They would be great pictures to use in a med-vet ent lecture on envenomization. I seem to remember some discussion here a couple of years ago about a species of jumping jack being responsible for the most fatal stings in Australia.

    Poor Huntsman, but at least it put up a fight.

  4. Y’all who muted it missed out on the pig squealing noises and cavalry bugle! Great video otherwise, as usual. That is some pretty hemolymph.

    1. I was watching the western regionals on DNN while assembling this post.

      I’d like to start a campaign to replace the old phrase “…since sliced bread” with roller derby comparisons.

      1. I was there! I announced a couple of bouts over the web, and several more in the venue. Sadly, my team (DRD) didn’t advance, but at least we went 3-1 and beat Bay Area…

  5. I think these gals might use their maxillae more than their relatively unwieldy forceps-mandibles to do most of the slicing.

    Also very struck by the rich, blue haemolymph. But its not the first blue-blooded arthropod I’ve heard of – Horseshoe crabs also have blue haemolymph.

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