Martialis heureka: the not-so-flashy but important news

Sunday, November 30th, 2008 | Ants, Phylogeny, Taxonomy | 2 Comments
Courtesy of Rabeling & Verhaagh/PNAS. Used with permision.

Courtesy of Rabeling & Verhaagh/PNAS. Used with permission.

The recent description of the new and unusual ant species from Brazil Martialis heureka, caused furor in the popular media. It was entertaining to watch how, like the children’s game of Chinese whispers, the report rapidly deteriorated and became increasingly sensationalistic as it spun through news agencies around the globe. Reports ranged from accurate and informative to down right silly, with some newspapers almost claiming that the species actually originated in Mars (You can read more about it at Myrmecos blog and comments therein).

I have to say, I appreciate the medias attention to insect science no matter how distorted it gets. But now that the news storm has settle we can point out some other good news about Rabeling, Brown, and Verhaagh’s paper.  News that may not make for a good newspaper headline but that are nevertheless relevant to specialists in ant systematics. › Continue reading


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And as we discussed last semester, the Army Ants will leave nothing but your bones.
- Tom Waits