Naked Science Forum

General Science => General Science => Topic started by: katieHaylor on 20/06/2018 11:28:17

Title: Will ants from the park survive in my garden?
Post by: katieHaylor on 20/06/2018 11:28:17
Vikram says:

What happens to ants who cling on to me when I exercise in park which I then dust off in my garden?
Do these ants then start living in the nest in my garden, or do the host ants fight these new intruders? Or does the ant know it's not in it's own nest and goes out looking for it's own nest?

I'm assuming the ant from park and garden are same species. Please help me to decide if I have to mercy kill. :)


What do you think?
Title: Re: Will ants from the park survive in my garden?
Post by: chris on 23/06/2018 11:58:08
Ants can recognise their nest-mates using a pattern of colony-specific molecules called "cuticular hydrocarbons" - CHBs, which they taste in each other by brushing their antennae together.

The composition of the CHB mixture is determined genetically, so closely-related individuals, such as nest mates, will have the same pattern. Foreigners, on the other hand, will smell different and be rejected as potential threats.

It's likely that an ant from the local park will be unrelated to an ant in your garden, so the two will regard each other as competitors and probably fight!

Ants also use CHBs to sniff out who is unwell and needs excluding from the colony on infection control grounds:

https://www.thenakedscientists.com/articles/interviews/ant-infection-control
Title: Re: Will ants from the park survive in my garden?
Post by: RjMaan on 23/06/2018 17:50:45
Ants have a very strong body and they have the ability to withstand all kind of environment. So, i think they can easily adjust themselves in your garden.
Title: Re: Will ants from the park survive in my garden?
Post by: evan_au on 24/06/2018 08:30:25
Quote from: chris
It's likely that an ant from the local park will be unrelated to an ant in your garden
This is true of most ant species - colonies of the same species, even quite close together will fight each other.

However, Argentine ants have an extended version of kinship, and form supercolonies, which can span large areas. But there is a warzone on the border with adjacent ant colonies, which leaves the suburban footpaths littered with the bodies of fallen warriors.
See: http://www.readingross.com/2017/01/argentine-invasion.html

Title: Re: Will ants from the park survive in my garden?
Post by: rami999 on 17/08/2018 22:27:30
every animal must live in its nature