Around many ant colonies, laying eggs is a one-woman-show, the duty of the queen ant. It's a facet so ingrained in ants that a number of species have been known to drag females who start laying eggs out of the colony, biting and stinging them to death, a behavior that has been seen in the past as a move to eliminate competition to the queen. According to new research published this week in the journal Current Biology, though, the executions have nothing to do with competition among ants and everything to do with the health of the colony as a whole, suggesting the execution may be analogous to a cellular immune response in other animals.
National Geographic's amazing video on human population milestones in 2011 took us by surprise. After all, the world's population reached 6 billion when I was in middle school. That wasn't that long a- Oh god it was more than ten years ago. (By the way, we highly recommend watching in HD and fullscreen.) (via Sociological Images.)