Siafu (Pinching Ant)

You are looking at an ant.  This is no ordinary ant, though.  Known as safari ants, siafu, or pinching ants, these little critters have been known to make a grown man strip.  They inject no toxin, but can draw blood without much effort.  Typically these ants are seen traveling in lines along the ground, and the large ants are posted along the line as sentinels.  If the line is disturbed, the sentinels are first to go into actions attacking the hapless disturber with many of the other ants following.  Often the ants will climb onto their victim in great numbers hunting for sensitive skin before giving a signal at which point all begin their pinching work at the same time.  It is interesting to note that once the ant pinches, it tends not to let go.  You can even separate the body from the head of the ant and the fangs will remain tightly attached to your skin. In fact, rumor has it that these were one time used to close wounds in place of stitches.  Hmmm, I’ll take the anesthetic and the thread instead.

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