Tag Archives: ants

Mob Rule

Yesterday I saw some ants on a gravel road.  I don’t know the species but I am guessing Formica obscuripes.  As near as I can tell a number of workers are holding down and killing another worker of the same … Continue reading

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Ants on Peonies

I saw these ants on peony flower buds yesterday. Peonies always attract ants.  They seem to get some kind of food from the tips of the emerging petals. I think these are Formica subsericea.  

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This Might be a Little More Difficult

In 2010 I spent some time taking photos of Formica exsectoides ants on the outside of their mound. With the boroscope, I might be able to take photos of the ants inside their nest. Assuming they let me…

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Flies and Peony Buds

Peony flower buds secrete a sugary fluid this time of year, and that fluid attracts a number of insects, especially flies and ants.  I have not heard an explanation that seems very likely to me.  I have been thinking about it and … Continue reading

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Ants and Treehoppers

I ran across some clusters of treehoppers and ants on giant ragweed yesterday and today. Here the ant is the Allegheny mound ant, Formica exsectoides.  The treehoppers are nymphs, but I think they are Publilia concava.  The ants and treehoppers … Continue reading

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Looking for Inspiration

I am not a musician but I often think that being a photographer is a lot like being a musician.  You do it for reasons that aren’t readily apparent to others.  You have to practice often.  Often you specialize–maybe you … Continue reading

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Ants and Butterflies

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 … Continue reading

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Ants and Aphids

Yesterday I came across some ants tending aphids. I am pretty sure the ant is Formica exsectoides,  the Allegheny mound ant.  I don’t know the aphid–I am pretty sure microscopic examination would be required to identify it. There is a … Continue reading

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Meal Time

There is an annual prairie plant that grows here in Iowa, and it is called partridge pea, Cassia fasciculata.  The plant has little glands at the base of its leaves.  Those glands are called extrafloral nectaries.  The plant releases sugary … Continue reading

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Peony Buds

Our peonies are getting close to blooming.  Peonies at this stage secrete some kind of nectar or sap that is very attractive to insects.  Often you will see the buds covered with ants. They are also quite attractive to flies.  … Continue reading

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