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Video: Bombardier beetle’s butt fires hot liquid like a machine gun

Have you ever heard of Bombardier beetle? (If not, click on the source link to learn more). The beetle is named exactly as per its work, when the insect gets threatened, it releases a excrete chemical which is extreme deadlier one.bombardier-beetle

Basically, the Bombardier beetle doesn’t excrete them, but actually, it mixes up the chemicals in its inner chambers, fires them when it approaches any threat.The insect excretes the deadly chemicals as high-speed boiling spray from its rear end. Researchers have found recently that – how the Bombardier beetle aims its target and spray them at enemies.


Scientists from MIT and University of Arizona published a study in Science that explains how bombardier’s bum fire, chemicals at the rate of 368 and 735 pulses per second.

Wendy Moore, study author at the University of Arizona, mentioned in a statement,

“Twenty-five years ago, a team of scientists from Cornell University and MIT discovered that each blast from the bombardier beetle is actually a series of extraordinarily fast micro-pulses. What wasn’t known is what causes each discharge to be pulsed, like a machine gun? Previous researchers suggested that the pulses were caused by muscle contractions or by a fluttering of the exit duct during the explosions.”

In order to find this, researchers have used a high-speed x-ray image sensing technology to monitor how they eject the chemicals while they are approaching any threat. To find out exact procedure, a scientist has tugged a robotic forceps in the beetle’s legs, which capture the gas propulsion by the Bombardier beetle when x-rays are fired.

Moore added,

“By having a pulsed delivery, these small beetles produce a relatively large amount of defensive spray, which they can aim precisely and with great force and speed. This is truly one of the most remarkable and elegant defensive mechanisms documented to date.”

The researchers have carefully monitored each and every activity during the tests and they maintained a separate observation chamber for the test and also ensured that – Whether X-ray beam is targeted on the exact gland of the animal. The process seems to be a pretty passive process and they have found out – how the valve between two chambers are maintained by the beetle. When the pressure of one chamber gets dropped, it allows the membrane to get relaxed and the valve opens. That’s all, when the two chemicals mix, Boom!!!. This stops when the beetle stops spraying and it is similar to man-made combustion engines.

[Via] [ about the bee ]

About John W Arthur

John is the head of our IT Security team and he writes about Security, IT news on The Next Digit. He was the Employee of the Year 2013 for his selfless support and efficiently setting up the whole security infrastructure. He also occasionally writes on "IT Sec Pro" Print Media of Sweden. All posts by John

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