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11 animals that use odor as a weapon

July 30, 2014, 6:20 p.m.
Bombardier beetle

Photo: David Hill/Flickr

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Bombardier beetle

These ground beetles, which inhabit every continent besides Antarctica, might be the most fearsome fetid animals of them all. When disturbed, they can squirt a foul-smelling, boiling-hot chemical spray with impressive accuracy. Not only does the spray stink, but it's also painful. Heat produced from a chemical reaction in the fluid can reach the boiling point of water, and it's corrosive to the skin as well. Worse yet, the insect can swivel its gland openings and fire the hazardous spray across a wide range, machine gun-style.