After spending whole day attacking the termites, warrior ants saved the comrades and brought them back safely to their homes. Frank, who is doing research on animal behavior and evolution and is a doctoral student at the University of Wurzburg in Germany said, “When the termites spot this invading army, they try to escape, but the fight between them becomes violent and roughly after 20 minutes the battle gets over.” While working at a field station he also found that some of the ants moving towards their home were not carrying any termites with them instead they were carrying other ant species.
He keenly observed their behavior and found that the ants were injured. He and his team members carried out an experiment and wondered what happened with those injured ants. Finally, they came to a conclusion that those ants were not able to march properly. They reported, because of their slow movements they used to be get eaten by the spiders and other dangerous predators. The injured ants that safely returned back to their nest without any help died about 32 percent of the time.
The Matabele ants in the sub-Saharan region mainly survive on termites. Two to four times each day, around 200 to 500 warrior ants line up themselves in parallel and walk towards the termites. The war begins where large ants destroy their nest and kill the termite workers residing in those nests. They then bring back their dead prey at home. It was revealed that the injured ants cry out for by giving two chemicals – dimethyl disulfide and dimethyl trisulfide which are secreted through glands of Matabele ants. According to the new study, this war between ants and termites is taking a new turn. Researchers from the University of Wurzburg in Germany got the details about a strange rescuing behavior of these insects.