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All About Ants

With the new flick, Ant Bully, hitting theaters on July 28, 2006, we thought we'd take a closer look at this industrious insect. Read on to get the goods on ants.

Ants - The Basics

Ants are insects that belong to the family Formicidae. Like all insects, the ant's body is divided into three distinct parts - the head, the thorax and the abdomen. Ants can be found all over the world, but tend to like dry, hot climates.

Ants - The Ant Colony Hierarchy

  • Queens: Typically there is one queen ant per colony. The Queen is the only ant in the colony that can reproduce. Almost all the queen's offspring are females, who are automatically worker ants when they are born.
  • Workers: The majority of ants in the colony are worker ants. They perform various tasks on a daily basis like looking for food, building the nest, tending their gardens, etc.
  • Soldiers: Soldier ants tend to be larger in size than your average worker ant. They have bigger heads and therefore, larger, stronger mandibles. These ants are supposed to protect the rest of the colony from predators like spiders, flies and other insects.

Ants - Co-operation Goes a Long Way

Unlike other creatures, including human beings, ants live and work in harmony with one another for the greater good of their colony. Instead of an every man for himself (or in this case, every ant for itself) outlook, ants put the colony's happiness and safety above their own. Ant colonies range in size around the world, but some have been found that house millions of ants in one super nest! Each ant has a specific role to play within their ant community, whether it's gathering food or caring for ant babies

Ants - Did U Know?

  • Ants are omnivores. This means they eat both meat and vegetation.
  • Queen ants are born with wings, but their wings fall off when they start to reproduce.
  • An ant can carry things that are up to twenty times their own weight.
  • The average ant life cycle only lasts about 45 to 60 days.

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How Long Have Ants Lived on Earth?

  • 100 million years.
  • 10 million years.
  • One million years.
  • One thousand years.

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