Why Do Ants carry Dead Ants?
The first thing that goes into your mind is that, they carry their dead back to their colony to eat them. If you had thought about this, then you are greatly mistaken. Ants doesn’t eat their ‘own dead,, they deposit them into their own graveyard. Well it is not really a graveyard like what we humans use, but a graveyard and a trash dump combined called a ‘midden,.
Dead ants are not eaten because their instincts probably tell them that ‘whatever caused their deaths, it might infect the entire colony. But I can’t just leave them here, so I’m going to take them back home,. This is a very interesting subject in regards to one of the busiest insects in the animal kingdom. When the ants carry their dead back to their colonies, they dump them to their personal waste disposal area which is the midden.
Scientist had made different studies on how ants determine the death of their own species. Many experts believe that ants release different chemicals in their bodies, when they are still alive. The lack of those chemicals will signal other ants that one of their ‘nest mates, is dead and needed attention. Knowing this fact, scientist can’t help in getting new found respect for these hard workers.
This just proves that the ants are very organized insects. Just like the bee’s, they divide their work and have their own duties. Other goes to hunt for food, to nurse the queen, to feed the young, to protect the colony. Just like what humans do in the government and with their families (they are probably more organized than we are).
So the next time you see an ant carrying another dead ant, you can be sure that he is not going to take that poor guy for lunch. More like, carrying a dear friend back to his home.