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Insects….No longer dirty?

September 1st, 2015

Insects…. No longer dirty?

Most would assume due their nature that ants would be extremely dirty insects. That assumption would be 100% incorrect says zoologist Alexander Hackman. Being clean is actually vital to an ant’s survival.

Dirty antennas can’t receive scents. Ants find food, navigate and communicate all through the use of their antennas. Dirty or nonresponsive antenna would be more than a hindrance to their entire being.

Ants have a cleaning tool in legs, located in the front joint in the carpenter ant. Scientists were able to study this mechanism through microscopes and video recordings. The data shows that ants are very specific with which particles they pick up. The antenna serves as a scraper. Scrapping off dirt and pollen, even going over it like a fine tooth comb, similar to a lice comb, to make sure the particle is in fact clean. Once the particle is clean, the ant then cleans his antenna with his mouth.

Ants are in fact very intricate and specific pests that cannot survive if they are not clean. With something as easy as a foreign bacteria able to end an entire ant colony, they are more than careful about what they bring home to their queen ant.

For more information on the cleanliness of ants, please click here

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