Who said ants cannot plan for disasters? Just before the huge thunderstorms hit is a couple of days ago, I saw a plastic lid lying in the yard. I went over to pick it up and noticed the ants had built their mound around it.
They knew a big storm was coming and used the plastic lid as a cover. I named it The Ant Dome.
As you can see, the storm beat down the walls around the lid, but the little fuckers are still working away at rebuilding the mound. It did have a complete ant mound all the way around the lid and just over the rim, but the rain and runoff washed most of it away. Now I wonder how high or how big the mound will get with the lid there. You can’t see them, but they are work their heads off.
I’m gonna watch it for a few days. If it gets weird, I’ll let ya know.
Years ago, when I was delivering Coca Cola for The Atlanta Coca Cola Bottling Co., I had to deliver to a fishing lake back off the beating path. As I pulled onto the dirt road leading to the fish camp, rains had eroded the ground down to where the truck back bumper hit the road and the wheels barely touched the rut. I had to call a tow truck to get me unstuck.
While waiting, my helper and I got to watching a huge ant mound and the working ants doing their ant thing. Well, six of them had a half shell of a beetle of some sort and they were trying to get the thing in the opening at the top of the mound. The shell was so much bigger than the hole and they would lift it on end and try to fit it in the hole. But to no avail.
I decided to give them a hand, so I reached down and broke the shell in half, long ways, and laid it back down. They grabbed one half and carried it back to the opening and lifted it up. It would barely fit. So they laid it back down and one of the ants went over to the hole, stuck his head in the opening for a second or two, then backed out and six more ants came out. HE CALLED FOR HELP!
Anyhelp, they picked up the shell half, took it back to the hole and one ant grabbed the end and backed down into the hole while the rest lifted it up. And one ant climbed to the top end and stood there like he was forcing it down by his body weight. And it went in.
A few seconds later a bunch of ants came out and grabbed the second half and did the same thing.
They were acting human. They had a problem, got unsolicited help from me, reevaluated the problem, called for help and made it happen.
It was the most fascinating thing I have ever seen in the wild. I’m just glad they are so small. Otherwise we humans would be in trouble.
That’s your Biology case study for today. Not test will be required, though.
Carry on! Return to ship’s work.