Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Time for Another Ant Farm Update

There is a proverb that goes, "Look to the ant, thou sluggard, consider her ways and be wise."

While I do not doubt the truthfulness of the proverb, our particular ant farm isn't showing us much in the way of wisdom. I'd say it's a bust.

I did contemplate releasing the ants who are still alive (and it's hard to tell if any new ones have died since there is such a graveyard inside). But, my husband quickly nipped that idea in the bud by reminding me that this species of ant isn't naturally found around here. I don't think it would do much harm seeing as there is no queen bee and there won't be any reproducing going on. So, we will continue to sit and watch the rest of the poor creatures die a boring death.

While doing yet more research, it seems the experts out there think the gel ant farms are duds. I also read that if the ants haven't started tunneling after one week, then they were probably damaged in transport.

Now, one might think that this experience would make me give up on the whole ant farm experiment. To that I say, "If only!"

I feel the need to show my readers some real tunnel excitement. Therefore, I have decided to purchase another ant farm and attempt once again to fill it with ants and hope for the best. After looking at Amazon, it appears that this blue gel farm has received high ratings so I will try once more with this style.

I'd also like to find some more books on ants to enrich our (okay - mainly my) studies.

Ant Cities by Arthur Dorros

The Life and Times of the Ant by Charles Micucci

Journey to the Ants: A Story of Scientific Exploration by Bert Hölldobler

I did find a tip for getting the ants from the tube into the farm - use a paper funnel! How ingenious. Now I'm almost excited for our new friends to arrive.

Stay tuned for more adventures with Carissa the Myrmecologist...

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