In the context of biology, symbiosis refers to an evolved relationship between organisms of different species that benefit each individual. When it comes to bugs, several insect species have evolved symbiotic relationships that help them survive.One interesting symbiotic relationship between insects is that between ants and aphids. Aphids produce a sugary substance that ants eat […]
The Bullet Ant (Paraponera clavata) is a species of ant native to parts of Central and South America. Bullet ants, also known as giant hunting ants and conga ants, are known for their aggressive defensive behavior and extremely painful sting. Bullet ants are commonly found in wet rainforests in Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, […]
One of my favorite experiences while pursuing my graduate degree happened 15 years ago while attending the Ant Course, which is a collaboration between the California Academy of Sciences and Harvard University that provides unique training to entomologists at the Southwestern Research Station in Portal, Arizona. I loved this course on many levels, but meeting […]
Demanding, rigorous, lethal. Three adjectives that could be used to describe the job of a forager ant. Forager ants are the breadwinners. They are the soldiers to a colonies queen, tasked to sacrifice their life scavenging. Dying for the promise of a flourishing colony. Yet what is it exactly that makes these foragers so efficiant? […]
Ants are thought of as being hard workers that work together in efficient teams, or colonies. However, new research studying the behavior of individual ants shows that they do less work per capita than believed. In order to sort out individual ants from the masses, researchers sorted the ants, separated into five lab-based colonies, painting […]
R.I.P. Uncle Milton – purveyor of dangerous toys Would you buy venomous biting ants for your kids? My parents did and millions of others did as well. How could a product that stung and bit you become so popular? Learn more about this amazing ant entrepreneur who sadly passed away today.
A new study finds elephants might be afraid of ants and unveils a little more of amazing symbiotic story of the ant and Acacia tree. Ants in your pants? That’s nothing compared with ants up your snout. And that’s what elephants in the African savanna must contend with when trying to snag a meal from […]
The ant genus of the month is the Cataglyphis genus. This ant would not win any “Ant America Pageant” but it definitely would win a desert survival competition. Why? Because it is one of the most heat tolerant animals known to man! One species in this group, Cataglyphis bicolor, lives in the Sahara desert and can […]