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Leaf cutter ants trail It&#039;s a pity we were hiking in a group because I can watch this phenomenon for hours. To witness the most complex animal society on the planet. This is how it roughly works:<br />
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1. Worker ants climb trees and cut down large segments. You&#039;ll see them &quot;raining&quot; onto the ground constantly. The tree-working ants may even form &quot;stairs&quot; of interconnected bodies to reach the leafs.<br />
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2. Ground ants cut the large leaf fragments into manageable smaller chunks for transport.<br />
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3. Transport troops carry the small fragments, which still weigh a few dozen times their own body weight, to the nest. The path is intelligently routed. If you&#039;d step on the path, 2 minutes later a path curbing that spot is created based on chemical signals of danger.<br />
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4. Eventually, the leafs make it to the nest, where it is then sorted by quality and type, and fed to the larvea.  Atta sexdens,Brazil,Insects,Leaf cutting ants,Pantanal,ants Click/tap to enlarge Promoted

Leaf cutter ants trail

It's a pity we were hiking in a group because I can watch this phenomenon for hours. To witness the most complex animal society on the planet. This is how it roughly works:

1. Worker ants climb trees and cut down large segments. You'll see them "raining" onto the ground constantly. The tree-working ants may even form "stairs" of interconnected bodies to reach the leafs.

2. Ground ants cut the large leaf fragments into manageable smaller chunks for transport.

3. Transport troops carry the small fragments, which still weigh a few dozen times their own body weight, to the nest. The path is intelligently routed. If you'd step on the path, 2 minutes later a path curbing that spot is created based on chemical signals of danger.

4. Eventually, the leafs make it to the nest, where it is then sorted by quality and type, and fed to the larvea.

    comments (6)

  1. Incredible and catching story, yes, would it have been the two of us, be'd be bitten all over:) Unfortunately I cannot identify them (41 species:)) Posted 9 years ago, modified 9 years ago
  2. Loved watching them, and you've captured really well. Posted one month ago
    1. Thanks, can't believe the photo is almost a decade old :) Posted one month ago
      1. Saw that, nothing wrong with age - my birthday last week!! Posted one month ago
        1. Happy belated birthday, young one. Posted one month ago
          1. Thank you kind sir!! :¬) Posted one month ago

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''Atta sexdens'' is a species of leafcutter ant belonging to the tribe Attini. Atta species are native to the New World, from Southern United States to Northern Argentina in the South. They are absent from Chile. They cut leaves to provide a substrate for the fungus farms which are their principal source of food. Their societies are among the most complex found in social insects.

Species identified by Ferdy Christant
View Ferdy Christant's profile

By Ferdy Christant

All rights reserved
Uploaded Nov 7, 2011. Captured Nov 7, 2011 21:12.
  • NIKON D7000
  • f/6.3
  • 1/250s
  • ISO1000
  • 150mm