I checked out the plant that had the aphids and ants on it again tonight. It seemed to me that there were fewer ants and especially fewer aphids than yesterday. Why? Or was it just my imagination–I did not count them or document their numbers yesterday.
The ants tap on either side of the aphids with their antenna. The tapping is rapid but gentle. However, given the size of the aphids it might be quite frightening or painful. I assume the aphids give up a small drop of honeydew from this behavior, but I did not see that.
Then I moved on to what is left of our pond–it is barely a puddle now, unfortunately. What little water remains is covered with duckweed. At the edge of the pond some orange sulfurs, Colias eurytheme were mudding. I had to belly crawl across the remains of dead snails, other pond creatures, and dried mud to get a better picture. Aside from a little elbow sand I came out all right.
We have had some very hot, dry weather. Soon the pond will dry up assuming we don’t get rain in the next few days.