Bombardier Beetle

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“These congregate together under stones, and when disturbed discharge a caustic fluid of an extremely penetrating odor, and so volatile that no sooner does it come in contact with the atmosphere than it passes into a vapour, accompanied by a considerable explosion, during which they seek to escape. When placed on the tongue this guid causes a sharp pain and leaves a yellow spot somewhat similar to that produced by a drop of nitric acid. The Bombardiers are said to be capable of giving off as many as 18 of such discharges at a time.” — Encyclopedia Britanica, 1893.


The Encyclopedia Britannica, New Warner Edition (New York, NY: The Werner Company, 1893)


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