Trap Jaw ants

There’s something oddly hypnotic about watching these ants somersault through the air in super slow motion.  Throw in a Brian Eno-esque score and you’ll be sucked right in.  Lest anyone think this is a fake, I looked these critters up and MSNBC had this to say in an article they ran back in 2006

In attacks against intruders, dubbed “bouncer defenses,” the ants slam their mandibles against their targets—in experiments, thin strips of plastic or metal—presumably to injure them or bounce them away. Coincidentally, this can also catapult the ants up to 15 inches away. This distance, translated for a 5-foot-6-inch tall person, roughly equates to a record-shattering Olympic long jump of 132 feet.

When the researchers introduced predators such as spiders, the trap-jaw ants at times used so-called “escape jumps,” directing their jaws toward the ground, launching themselves up to 3 inches in the air. For our 5-foot-6-inch Olympian, that’s 44 feet. The world record in the high jump is just slightly over 8 feet.

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