Scientists study species that releases huge quantities of bodily fluids to plug nest holes
While humans might change their locks to deal with intruders, a species of aphid opts for a communal sacrifice, releasing huge quantities of a sticky bodily fluid to plug holes in their nests.
Researchers who studied the makeup of the fluid found the process for nest repair was similar to what happens when aphids are wounded, involving the release of substances that clot and form a scab. This means similar mechanisms underpin both individual immunity and so-called social immunity – when organisms work together to protect their communities from enemies and disease.
'Body eruption': the aphids that sacrifice themselves for colony