Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Ant Farm Update - I'm Becoming a Myrmecologist!

Seeing as our new visitors have been in our house for a week now, I thought it was time to give you all an update. Are you ready to see the changes on the farm?



Doesn't look any different, does it?

Here is the back side:



In this picture, you can see a couple of ant corpses at the bottom of the tunnels. I have spent lots of time watching the ants while preparing meals in the kitchen. Yes, I keep the ant farm on my kitchen counter. What can I say? I find it somewhat relaxing to watch them. My observation thus far is that they spend all of their time moving their dead friends back and forth. One minute I will see two or three dead ants down in the tunnels. Then, just thirty minutes later I return and the tunnels are empty. This same routine goes on all day long.

Two days ago I felt sorry for the little guys and decided to risk taking the top off of the farm and removing some of the dead ants with tweezers. Who would want to live in a place with all of their dead friends lying around? I took Angela's advice and attempted this risky task outside. I'll tell you, those ants came alive when I started messing with their home! They became very active and tried to either climb out of the farm or attack me - not sure which. I was only able to capture two of the bodies before I gave up and put the top back on.

So far there is no tunneling taking place. I'm not sure if any will at this point. I did try and do some research on ant farms to see if there was anything we could do to help the situation. From what I read, without a queen ant to tell them what to do, these female worker ants are lost. I do find all of this ant "stuff" fascinating. Maybe I'm becoming a myrmecologist (person who studies ants - that's your word for the day).

In my research, I did find a very cool blog called My Little Ant Farm. This person has made their own farm and has lots of pictures of the entire process. Check it out if you get a chance (and are at all interested in the subject).

I will update again next week. Fingers crossed we have something a little more exciting to share.

4 comments:

  1. Wow, you are way nice to those ants! I never would dare such a thing as opening the top of that thing!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Do you put anything in the farm for them to eat or drink?

    ReplyDelete
  3. Their food and water is in the gel that the farm is made out of. There is no upkeep at all.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I thought I replied to your comment Keith! No, the gel provides the ants with both food and water.

    ReplyDelete

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