• If a man could run as fast for his size as an ant can, he could run as fast as a racehorse.
  • Ants can lift 20 times their own body weight.
  • With their combined weight greater than the combined weight of all humans, ants are the most numerous type of animal.
  • An ant brain has about 250 000 brain cells. A human brain has 10,000 million so a colony of 40,000 ants has collectively the same size brain as a human. Ant brains are largest amongst insects. An ant’s brain may have the same processing power as a Macintosh II computer.
  • Thousands of years ago, King Solomon wrote: “Go to the ant, consider its ways and be wise”.
  • Ants in Africa eat more animcal flesh than lions, hyenas and all other carnivores put together.
  • The average life expectancy of an ant is 45-60 days.
  • Adult ants cannot chew and swallow solid food. They rely on juice which they squeeze from pieces of food.
  • The abdomen of the ant contains two stomachs. One stomach holds the food for itself and second stomach is for food to be shared with other ants.
  • There are over 10000 known species of ants.
  • Some worker ants are given the job of taking the rubbish from the nest and putting it outside in a special rubbish dump.
  • Some birds put ants in their feathers because the ants squirt formic acid which gets rid of the parasites.
  • The Slave-Maker Ant (Polyergus Rufescens) raids the nests of other ants and steals their pupae. When these new ants hatch,they work as slaves within the colony.
  • If a worker ant has found a good source for food, it leaves a trail of scent so that the other ants in the colony can find the food.
  • The Army Ant (Ecitron Burchelli) of South America, can have as many as 700,000 members in its colony. Army Ants are nomadic and they are always moving. They carry their larvae and their eggs with them in a long column.
  • The Leaf Cutter Ants cut out pieces of leaves which they take back to their nests.
  • Wood ant workers live seven to ten years.
  • The queen ant lives up to ten or twenty years.
  • Some colonies may contain millions of ants, all produced by a single queen.
  • The wood ant can threaten the enemy with open jaws.
  • There are thirty-five thousand kinds of ants in the world.
  • Some ants sleep seven hours a day.
  • Ants are normally from 2 to 7 mm long, although carpenter ants can stretch to 2 cm, or almost an inch.
  • Some ants care for and “farm” other insects.
  • Lycaenid larvae provide secretions high in amino acids and carbohydrates and obtain protection from ants in return. The ants milk the secretions by tickling glands on the caterpillar with their antennae.

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