Small but mighty, ants are a fact of life for people on every continent in the world except Antarctica (funny enough, given the name). Despite how small they are, ants are remarkable creatures with a number of fascinating abilities, as well as a 130-million-year-history on our planet.
Check out these amazing facts about ants, including what makes them such effective kitchen invaders.
1. The total number of ants in the world weighs the same as the total number of people.
If you’ve ever wondered just how many ants there are compared to human beings on the planet at any given time, this information will give you some idea. According to what scientists estimate, for every single human being on the planet, there exist 1.5 million ants.
2. Ants are incredibly strong for their size.
Ants are like the Incredible Hulk in insect form. They have extremely thick muscles relative to the size of their body, allowing certain ant species to lift objects as great as 50 times their own body weight. If you had muscles in that proportion, you’d be able to carry a car by yourself.
3. Ant colonies contain a “caste” system.
Most of the colony is comprised of worker ants, who are all female. The worker ants keep the colony in continuous operation. Many colonies also contain ants that perform other roles, such as scouts, foragers, and soldiers. Each ant colony has a queen, whose sole role is to lay eggs. It’s actually possible for any female ant larva to become the queen if she obtains a diet that’s high enough in protein. This high-protein diet will allow her to develop into a queen, rather than a worker.
Male ants (drones) are winged ants whose only purpose is to mate with the queen ant. Male ants live for only a few months and die shortly after mating. Queen ants, on the other hand, can live for decades.
4. Ants communicate with each other using chemicals.
By releasing chemicals called pheromones, ants are able to communicate with each other. These pheromone messages allow ants to do things like alert each other of danger and coordinate to achieve a common goal that could never be achieved by one ant alone.
5. Ant invasions start with scouts.
Ever wondered why you see ants traveling to your pantry in an organized line? These ants are following the trail of scents left by a scout ant! Scout ants have the specific task of finding food and use visual cues to find their way back to the colony after finding a food source. They leave pheromones behind that then guide foraging ants to the food, and worker ants soon follow until no food is left.
Once an ant invasion starts, it can be hard to stop. The experts at Bug Commander Pest Control can help by providing you with an effective, long-term solution. We use the industry’s number-one products, including organic and pet-friendly solutions that don’t expose you and your family to unnecessary chemicals.