You have more than likely heard the children’s song “The ants go marching.” In fact, there is a decent probability that you are singing it in your head after reading the title just now. As the spring thaw begins, the season for those pesky ants to come marching in is rapidly approaching. Here are some facts that everyone should know about these amazing insects.
1. Ants have been around since the time of the dinosaurs – Studies have shown remnants of ants as far back as 130 million years ago.
2. Ants are ridiculously strong – Due to their diminutive size, their muscles have a much larger cross-sectional area relative to their bodies than other animals and insects. This unique makeup allows them to lift and carry between 10 – 100 times their body weight depending on the species of ant.
3. Speaking of different species – Over 10,000 different species of ants have been discovered throughout the world. It is also estimated that at any given time, there are over 10 quadrillion ants alive on the planet.
4. Ants are found on almost every continent – No ants have been discovered on Antarctica, but they are found on every other continent.
5. Ants don’t have ears or lungs – Although ants don’t necessarily hear, they have an acute sense for deciphering vibrations felt in the ground to warn them of impending danger or help them communicate when hunting for food. There is a special organ found just below their knee to help assist them with this. As for their respiratory system, they take in oxygen through a series of tiny holes located in various parts of their bodies. Since the ant’s body is too small for a complex system like humans have, these tiny holes are interconnected through a series of tubes that enables oxygen distribution to almost every single cell.
6. The size of an individual ant colony varies greatly between species – Ant colonies can range in size from a few dozen ants to as many as 300 million. These enormous super colonies are found mainly in Australia but have also been found in Southern Europe, the United States and even Japan. Super colonies reside in vast nests that have space for food storage and other supplies. Smaller colonies don’t require large nests and can reside inside of any natural crack or crevice they can find.
As temperatures warm you will undoubtedly start to notice ants marching around here and there. If you see one, there are sure to be others nearby. The smart move is to take preventative measures and contact Optimum Pest Control before it is too late.