Latest Leafcutter ant Stories
Symbiosis between ants and bacteria explains how leaf-cutter ants dominate tropical environments.
Fungus-farming ants have cultivated the same fungal crops for 50 million years.
The prestigious Smithsonian Museum has been overrun with insects.
Ant trails fascinate children and scientists alike. With so many ants traveling in both directions, meeting and contacting one another, carrying their loads and giving the impression that they have a sense of urgency and duty, they pose the following question: how do they organize themselves? A new study published in the open-access, peer-reviewed journal PLoS ONE may have some answers.
One of the most important developments in human civilization was the practice of sustainable agriculture: but we were not the first - ants have been doing it for over 50 million years.
The results of a new study suggest that past climate changes and sea level fluctuations may have promoted the formation of new species in the Amazon region of South America.
It turns out ants, like humans, are true farmers. The difference is that ants are farming fungus.
Far from being a model of social cooperation, the ant world is riddled with cheating and corruption â€“ and it goes all the way to the top, according to scientists from the Universities of Leeds and Copenhagen.
The ants, one of the most successful groups of insects, are of particular interest because they form advanced colonies, and can constitute up to 15 percent of the total animal biomass of a tropical rainforest. They belong to the order Hymenoptera and are close relatives of the vespoid wasps. Ants appear in amber, found in central New Jersey, believed to be from the Cretaceous period. It is thought that they evolved from the wasps that had appeared during the Jurassic period. They are...
Leafcutter ants are found in warmer regions of Central and South America. These remarkable social insects have evolved an advanced agricultural system. They feed on a specialized fungus that grows only in the underground chambers of the ants' nest. The ants actively cultivate their fungus, feeding it with freshly-cut vegetation and maintaining it free from pests and weeds. This is done by a symbiotic relationship with a colony of bacteria that grows on the ants that protect the fungus. The...
- Large; stout; burly.