Ants

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nephiliim
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Ants

Post by nephiliim »

Hey folks,

Second time I saw this behaviour with ants. I don't know if the larger ants are feeding the smaller ones.. but the big one came from the food (banana) I had put there, and the smaller one was going towards that food (in that direction anyway).
Or maybe it is a direct (chemical) way to pass information on to each other... I don't know

Hope you like it

Image

All the best,

Tom B
Sometimes smaller is better eh? nodge nodge :lol

Canon EOS 450D
Sigma MACRO 70mm F2.8 EX DG
Tamron AF70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD Macro

No external flash yet :(

Bruce Williams
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Post by Bruce Williams »

You captured some interesting intra-species interaction here (worker and soldier is a reasonable assumption).

Now wouldn't it be just so bizarre if us humans had developed along the same lines of polymorphic specialisation. We might see 10 foot tall, hugely muscled solder humans and small, fast and wiry worker humans and of course we would need a queen to bear all the kids ...the mind boggles when trying to picture what she might look like :shock:

Good, attention grabbing pic Tom.

Bruce :lol:

MacroLuv
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Post by MacroLuv »

Nice scene finding Tom. :D
Bruce Williams wrote: ...the mind boggles when trying to picture what she might look like :shock:

Bruce :lol:
And it would be called sexy! :lol:
The meaning of beauty is in sharing with others.

P.S.
Noticing of my "a" and "the" and other grammar
errors are welcome. :D

Ken Ramos
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Post by Ken Ramos »

I must say TomB, you did a great job with this photograph. Not only is the behavior of the ants remarkable but the depth of field and composition of the image is fantastic IMO. Very nice work =D>

nephiliim
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Post by nephiliim »

Bruce Williams wrote:You captured some interesting intra-species interaction here (worker and soldier is a reasonable assumption).

Now wouldn't it be just so bizarre if us humans had developed along the same lines of polymorphic specialisation. We might see 10 foot tall, hugely muscled solder humans and small, fast and wiry worker humans and of course we would need a queen to bear all the kids ...the mind boggles when trying to picture what she might look like :shock:

Bruce :lol:
You are right about the worker & soldier part, but this behaviour I have never seen between those two intra-species sub-groups of ants, in the netherlands anyway.
The smaller ants (different species) that lives here is really something different, they are ~1 mm in length and are massive in numbers (estimate of about 500 up to 1000 on a piece of bread, yes I have lunch-breaks :lol: ) whilst they are foraging. While these fellers, or should I say lasses, are about 5 times that size (workers), and >10 times that size (soldiers), foraging in groups of ~20 to 25 individuals.
These foraginggroups are composed out workers aswell as soldiers, all of them feeding.

Tomorrow I will try to take a picture of the group in whole, and I will also try to count the worker/soldier ratio in several groups using same size baits (read squashed banana & sirup :lol: )

All the best and thank you all for the comments,

Tom B

Post Scriptum: I know a few ladies that might just fill the jobsubscription for queen #####... err.. I mean queen ant (no sexual harasment intended)
Sometimes smaller is better eh? nodge nodge :lol

Canon EOS 450D
Sigma MACRO 70mm F2.8 EX DG
Tamron AF70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD Macro

No external flash yet :(

Gordon C. Snelling
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Location: California

Post by Gordon C. Snelling »

Great shot of a bit of trophylaxis. This is genus Formica technically they do not have a soldier /minor caste systems as the works range in size from the very small to very large with no distinct gaps in size.

Bruce Williams
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Post by Bruce Williams »

Tom - Now that's a great way to spend a lunch break - and sacrificing a banana too (or do you rerieve it after you've taken your pics :lol:

Look forward to seeing more photos!

Gordon - So that's what they were doing ...and a new word (new to me anyways) to thank you for :D

BTW, could you recommend a good website for general information on ant species, organisation, behaviour and morphology?

Bruce
Last edited by Bruce Williams on Tue Feb 20, 2007 3:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

beetleman
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Post by beetleman »

Yes sir, I had to look up that word..thank you Gordon for the interesting info and thank you Tom for the great picture.
Take Nothing but Pictures--Leave Nothing but Footprints.
Doug Breda

nephiliim
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Post by nephiliim »

I am so glad WE do not use trophylaxis to feed each other.. Rather have my mrs. feed me with a spoon actually :lol:

Thanks for this new addition to my vocabulary!!

About new shots; it has been rainig for 2,5 days now.. zo every bait i put up is washed away within a few minutes :x really anoying. Hope to get better weather soon.

All the best,

Tom
Sometimes smaller is better eh? nodge nodge :lol

Canon EOS 450D
Sigma MACRO 70mm F2.8 EX DG
Tamron AF70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD Macro

No external flash yet :(

Planapo
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Post by Planapo »

Really nice shot, Tom!
Where was it actually taken? Not in the Netherlands, I presume :D .

Btw, there was a little misstyping.
The correct spelling is
t r o p h a l l a x i s.

(Though I know for sure that Gordon knows how to spell it right, but we don´t want the other guys to get their new vocabulary wrong :wink: )

To be even more specific: Tom´s capture shows stomodeal trophallaxis since the donor spends the liquid food from the mouth. The other version not shown here is called proctodeal trophallaxis which means that the food originates from the donor´s anus. :shock:

Cheers,
Betty

P.S.
Gordon, what makes you sure it´s Formica and not say... Camponotus for example?
(asks Betty who is always willing to learn)
Last edited by Planapo on Wed Feb 21, 2007 7:07 am, edited 1 time in total.

nephiliim
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Post by nephiliim »

Betty,

The shot was taken in the caribbean, on Curacao to be precise.

The proctodeal trophallaxis is when antlarvae secreed a sweet fluid from their behind and the workers eat it.
Or was that in bees??

All the best,

Tom B
Sometimes smaller is better eh? nodge nodge :lol

Canon EOS 450D
Sigma MACRO 70mm F2.8 EX DG
Tamron AF70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD Macro

No external flash yet :(

Gordon C. Snelling
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Location: California

Post by Gordon C. Snelling »

Ohh bother, I now have to rethink my Id on this one. I was assuming it was taken in the Netherlands which made Formica the obvious choice based on the characteristics I could see. Since it is from the caribbean, Camponotus is the more obvious culprit. However the features needed to be sure are not readily visible in the photo.
Many thanks for correcting my spelling I realized I had made the mistake after I posted but I was running out the door and had no time to fix it.
Bruce, there are a huge number of websites out there which all to some degree deal with those questions I will try to find a good general one for you.

nephiliim
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Post by nephiliim »

Gordon,

What features do you need? I can make some "detail"shots if you like. Though this is about the closest I can get, maybe a bit more. Have to get me another lense here.

All the best,

Tom B
Sometimes smaller is better eh? nodge nodge :lol

Canon EOS 450D
Sigma MACRO 70mm F2.8 EX DG
Tamron AF70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD Macro

No external flash yet :(

Gordon C. Snelling
Posts: 300
Joined: Sun Aug 13, 2006 3:13 pm
Location: California

Post by Gordon C. Snelling »

Tom
many thanks for the offer, I cheated though and had my dad look at the image. He forgets more about ants everyday than I will ever know. He confirms that it is indeed a Camponotus, possibly C. blandus or one in that group. What threw me was the mistaken locality and the extreme pilosity of the body as I know of no Campy with that much fine appressed hair from either the U. S or Europe. So the hair screamed Formica and the lateral view of the mesosoma screamed Camponotus. For future reference though a good side shot and good full face view can make a big difference in ease of identifications. One question would you allow me to use the image as the lead in image for the next issue of Notes from Underground I put out??

nephiliim
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Joined: Wed Aug 02, 2006 9:17 am
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Post by nephiliim »

Hey no problem m8 :D Always happy to see my work turn up somewhere.
Need bigger size or res. for the page?

All the best,

Tom B
Sometimes smaller is better eh? nodge nodge :lol

Canon EOS 450D
Sigma MACRO 70mm F2.8 EX DG
Tamron AF70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD Macro

No external flash yet :(

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