Thursday, September 11, 2008

Undertaker Ant

Insect UndertakerAnt buries the dead

The following is an excerpt from Scottish Illustrator and photographer Alison Ashwell's Blog 'Alison Wonderland':

Ant society is very well organised . many ants have specialised roles such as
nursemaids, farmers [of aphids and fungi], hunters, workers and soldiers.
The least known ant specialism is the probably that of the undertaker ants,
who carry the dead bodies of their colleagues out of the ant nest and bury them
in a safe place.
This is important to prevent the spread of infection and
epidemics within the ant nest.
I watched this undertaker ant carry the body
up and down rocks before eventually burying the body and covering the burial
place with dead leaves.

I do believe that this ant is performing one of the 7 Corporal Acts of Mercy and I'm glad to have it as my colleague.

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