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Honey Pot Ant Is The Weirdest Thing In The Desert

Friday, August 21st, 2009

The Honey Pot Ant is the Weirdest Thing In The Desert according to our Weird Thing Tiny Chat this week. Here is a brief description by Wikipedia.

Many insects, notably honey bees and some wasps, collect and store liquid for use at a later date. However, these insects store their food within their nest or in combs. Honey ants are unique in using their own bodies as living storage, but they have more function than just storing food. Some store liquids, body fat, and water from insect prey brought to them by worker ants. They can later serve as a food source for their fellow ants when food is otherwise scarce. In certain places, they are eaten by people as sweets and are considered a delicacy.

These ants can live anywhere in the nest, but in the wild, they are found deep underground, literally imprisoned by their huge abdomens, swollen to the size of grapes. They are so valued in times of little food and water that occasionally raiders from other colonies, knowing of these living storehouses, will attempt to steal these ants because of their high nutritional value and water content. These ants are also known to change colors. Some common colors are green, red, orange, yellow, and blue.

Thanks to everyone who helped out this week! Next week’s contest will be to find the Weirdest Plant In The World. Email nominations to JustinRobertYoungATGmail!