Discovering a new type of blue ant in the Himalayas! Discovering a new type of blue ant in the Himalayas!

Discovering a new type of blue ant in the Himalayas!

Discovering a new type of blue ant in the Himalayas!
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A team of scientists has discovered a new species of blue ant in the northeastern Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh, sparking further interest in the unique biodiversity in this part of the Himalayas.

The rare little ant, called Paraparatrechina neela, is less than 2 mm long, and its body is mostly metallic blue, except for the antennae, lower jaw and legs. It is characterized by a triangular head, large eyes, and a triangular jaw with five teeth.

The species is described in a new study published in the journal ZooKeys. “While exploring a tree hole in a steep cattle track in the remote village of Yenku one evening, something sparkled in the twilight,” said researchers from the Ashoka Research Foundation in Ecology (ATREE) in Bengaluru.

While blue is common in insects such as butterflies and beetles as well as some bees and wasps, it is relatively rare in ants.

Researchers say that of the approximately 17,000 known species and breeds of ants around the world, only a few of them appear blue.

Nanostructures create colors using their optical properties rather than being produced directly by pigments.

Studies have shown that this part of Arunachal Pradesh offers the world unparalleled diversity, much of which has yet to be explored.

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