Argentine Ants

Our last shoot in Spain focussed on the Argentine ant invasion of the world. Scientists are only just unravelling the causes of their incredible success at colonising Europe, North America, Hawaii, Australia, New Zealand and many more. It turns out that the bulk of these ants form one enormous super colony of ants that will always welcome each other if introduced. There are other supercolonies, one from Catalonia in Spain, which will immediately attack ants from different super colonies, and fight to the death. This photo shows one ant from the main supercolony snipping the leg of an ant from the Catalan supercolony, while its own limbs are severed in the same way.


Joao said...

Do you know how far South does this super colony from Catalonia go?

ammonite said...

Hi Joao
Not much further South than Barcelona - but the two colonies are often mixed up, so there is no clear line between them.