Despite their name, assassin bugs aren’t notable for their ability to kill (though many of them will lay down the law should the need arise) but rather how they use the dead. Much like Ed Gein, assassin bugs make as much use of corpses as they can. Unlike Ed Gein, assassin bugs aren’t sexual deviants with murderous and cross-dressing tendencies.
Some assassin bugs will cover themselves in the bodies of the dead and dying in an attempt to camouflage themselves from larger predators like spiders. By acting as a pile of dead and debris an assassin bug is able to avoid detection by bugs that rely on vision. It’s less effective against those who rely on other senses, but you had to know that hiding among the dead was a gamble of its own.
Assassin bugs will also use their unique style of camouflage as a means to ambush their prey, leaping out of their lifeless shield to strike. Should their cover be blown, they can also shed the bodies at a moment’s notice. We can’t help but think that either scenario is just as perplexing to witness.
If army ants can be considered the Rambos of the ant universe, then tree ants are the Predators. Their horrifying claim to fame is their ability to construct elaborate traps to ambush potential prey, such as locusts or Jesse “The Body” Ventura.
After finding a host plant, the tree ants begin building foxholes out of its hair and then intentionally grow fungus to hold it together. Once complete, they wait for something to have the misfortune of stumbling into their parlor. And their dedication to the craft is admirable; they’ll wait for days if they have to. But it’s not about the hunt; it’s about loving what you do.
Once prey approaches the ants attack, grasping whatever appendage they can and tearing at it until it’s completely dismembered. This tactic allows a team of tree ants to take on most other insects regardless of size. Should they be too feisty, the ants will inject their victim with a venom that paralyzes them just long enough for them to be torn to tiny pieces. Mother Nature is cheesed my friends, and she’s a crazy, crazy b*#!h.
- - Bombardier Beetles: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_KdNHBbokUu4/SlDotnZmTrI/AAAAAAAABVs/VAqT9NoCH6A/s400/Big_Scary_Bug_1_by_seto2112.jpg http://www.freefoto.com/images/33/15/33_15_57---Fire-Flame-Textures_web.jpg http://www.biomimicrynews.com/Images/Pheropsophus_verticalis.jpg
- - Voodoo Wasps: http://mjcdn.motherjones.com/preset_16/Nasonia.jpg
- - Army Ants: http://x9b.xanga.com/6de123f767633234608955/z164142162.jpg http://progressives.typepad.com/photos/uncategorized/army_ants.jpg
- - Assassin Bugs: http://www.mordercy.yoyo.pl/gein/09.jpg http://0.tqn.com/d/insects/1/0/b/6/-/-/Bugwood-5082088.jpg
- - Tree Ant: http://dietrichthrall.files.wordpress.com/2009/04/predator.jpg http://i.livescience.com/images/050420_Allomerus_02.jpg