A review on self-destructive defense behaviors in social insects

  title={A review on self-destructive defense behaviors in social insects},
  author={John R. Shorter and Olav Rueppell},
  journal={Insectes Sociaux},
Colony defense is a necessary but dangerous task for social insects, and nest defensive behaviors often lead to a premature death of the actor. As an extreme form of colony defense, self-sacrificial behaviors have evolved by kin selection in various social insects. Most self-sacrificial defensive mechanisms occur in response to an acute threat to the colony, but some behaviors are preemptive actions that avert harm to the colony. Self-sacrifice has also been observed as a form of preemptive… 

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  • S. CremerM. Sixt
  • Biology
    Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
  • 2008
The aim of this review is to highlight common evolutionary principles acting in disease defence at the level of both individual organisms and societies, thereby linking the fields of physiological and ecological immunology.

Moribund Ants Leave Their Nests to Die in Social Isolation

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