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Foraging Behavior

Foraging Behavior

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Foraging Behavior

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Presentation Transcript

  1. Foraging Behavior Using ants to explore ecology

  2. Foraging behaviors Organisms should have behaviors which minimize • Search for food • Food handling

  3. Ants are insects • Six legs • 3 body parts • Head, Thorax and Abdomen

  4. Mandibles

  5. Chemical sensors/communication • Ants have more than 20 different chemicals they can use for sending information to one another

  6. Leaf cutter ants have enlarged heads for leaf cutting

  7. Queen Ant

  8. Males for mating only

  9. Female Workers

  10. Examples of Ant foraging • Symbiotic/mutualism + + • Herbivory - + • Predation + - • Parasitic + - • Competition - -

  11. Mutualism:Ants and Acacias • Acacia provides: • Food • Home • Ant provides • Protection • Competitive advantage

  12. Mutualism: Ants and Scale

  13. Mutualism: Ants and Butterflies

  14. Herbivory: Leaf cutter ants

  15. Leafcutter harvesting fungus

  16. Predators: Ants killing worm

  17. Parasites: Slaver ants killing queen

  18. Parasites: Enslaving ants

  19. Parasites: Slaver ants with enslaved worker ants

  20. Conclusions • Ants are ideal study organisms • Small • Ubiquitous • Truly fascinating

  21. Scientific report • Introduction • State hypotheses tested • Methods • Explain how you composed the experiment • Results • Include graphs and figures • Discussion • Explain the relevance of the study