Have you ever wondered how ants communicate with one another? Or how information passes on from one generation to the next in a colony?
I give some insight into the lives of ants, and how they might not be a simple-minded as one may think.
You can view my presentation here.
Thanks for visiting! If you would like, feel free to leave a question or comment below!
June 7, 2020 at 9:13 pm
Hello, Grace! Wow! I absolutely loved your presentation! One of my favourite parts was how you so effectively painted a picture for us at the beginning. That was a really unique and creative choice, and it added so much to your presentation. Something I found really interesting was how different ants make different types of sounds. I had no idea about this, and I liked that you provided clips to demonstrate those different sounds. It’s super challenging to think of wish to give you, because your entire presentation was a wonderful representation of the hard work you must have invested. If I am to provide something though, I might suggest laying out your original inquiry question near the beginning so we can read it, but with that being said, I loved how you came up with an effective title that wasn’t in the form of a question. My question for you is: Was this the first time you began learning about ants? What specifically interested you about these creatures in the first place? I most likely never would have thought to begin researching the “secrets of ants”, and I love that you opened my eyes to such an underrated animal. Thank you!
June 8, 2020 at 4:04 am
Thanks so much for your kind words and feedback Lara! To answer your question, I have followed ant keepers and even watched queen ants give birth to the beginnings of a colony in the past, but I have never delved this deep into the science behind their lives! I have always loved animals and nature, and I remember the specific moment when I realized that I would love to raise a colony and watch them grow. I was watching a video where someone was trying to help his Yellow Crazy Ants recover from a recent mite infestation (in case you are interested, this is the specific video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LxXqeJQsrLA). In order to do this, he tried introducing Hypoaspis Miles that preyed on the mites that were causing the ants distress. In that moment, I realized how much we had to learn from these creatures, even if they are thousands of times smaller than we are!
June 8, 2020 at 12:56 am
Hi Grace! I loved your presentation so much! You’ve picked such an interesting topic to study, and you kept me engaged and interested throughout the entire talk! It’s really hard for me to find a wish, but I did have trouble hearing the audio of your PowerPoint at some times, but this might just be an issue with my computer specifically. My question is: Do different species of ants have specific accents and tones? Or is it just the different roles within the colony that have varying noises?
June 8, 2020 at 4:13 am
Thank you Brianna! I’m so glad to hear you enjoyed the presentation, and I will definitely look into improving the audio quality! Unfortunately, I can’t give a definite answer to your question, since this is a topic that is still being studied by myrmecologists. However, based on the conclusions I am able to draw from my own research, I believe that the differences in accent and tones between different species are not significant, or, at least, the ants do not rely on them to tell members of their own colony apart from workers of potential enemies. This is because ants primarily rely on pheromones to communicate with one another, and different chemicals released
indicate which colony the workers belong to in a matter of seconds. I’m sorry I wasn’t able to provide a very satisfying answer to your question, but you brought up a really good point and this is something I will certainly continue to look into!
June 8, 2020 at 1:41 am
Your presentation was absolutely amazing and I learned so, so much about the way ants communicate! You spoke very clearly, and your presentation was informative and interesting. It was extremely easy to follow along with what you were saying. I struggled to find a criticism, but I would say that maybe you could consider putting a bit less text on certain slides. There were many slides with less text and I felt like I could concentrate more on what you were saying on those slides. However, your presentation was super impressive and easy to understand!
Here is my question: If you could dive deeper into another inquiry into the way ants communicate, what aspect of your project would you focus on? Why?
Thank you so much! I loved watching your presentation!
June 8, 2020 at 4:20 am
Hi Emma! Thank you so much for your kindness and constructive criticism! You brought up a really good point about the slides; I will definitely consider that in similar presentations in the future! To answer your question, I would love to learn more about the science behind pheromones and their effect of the ants! Unfortunately, there is currently not much information about this topic, since humans are unable to experience pheromones the way ants do. One of the leading myrmecologists, E. O. Wilson, actually created an entire presentation on how much we humans are missing out on, simply because we overlook the lives and experiences of creatures like ants, and this makes me really wonder what it is like to be able to communicate through smell alone, or to share an image with someone else simply by making brief physical contact!
June 8, 2020 at 11:33 pm
Great presentation Grace! Your use of pictures, videos and quotes made your presentation very informative! Your use of pictures also made the presentation very visually appealing! My only wish would be to have your inquiry question at the beginning but otherwise I think you did amazing! I found it very interesting to hear the sounds the ants can make! My question for you is would sound pollution affect colonies of ants since they cant call to each other or would the use of hormones be enough for a colony to communicate? Great job on the presentation!