Ants know how to self-medicate to fight off fungal infections
It’s a nasty poison, but for an ant fighting off a dangerous fungus, it could be the only hope. For the first time, ants have been seen self-medicating – on food rich in hydrogen peroxide. Large, dense colonies of social insects like ants and bees can be particularly vulnerable to parasite infections and fungal diseases. One way to manage this might be to ingest otherwise harmful substances to fight the infections, but conclusive evidence of this behaviour in insects had been elusive.