16 Jan '12, 5am

Ants and Evolution - McGill University Creates Supersoldier Ants: (Source: Celsias) They look like characters...

Ants and Evolution - McGill University Creates Supersoldier Ants: (Source: Celsias) They look like characters...

In Pheidole (big-headed) ant colonies, there are millions of individual workers, including minor workers and soldiers. Typically, depending on the food the ants are fed, certain hormones are triggered in the ant larvae and they either develop into soldiers or minor workers. After unexpectedly finding supersoldier-like anomalies in Pheidole species in Long Island, where they aren’t normally seen, Abouheif and his team knew something unusual was going on. “I’ve been collecting samples there for almost 15 years,” said Abouheif. “But when I saw them, I thought, ‘Holy cow! Those are monstrous looking soldiers!’ They look like the ones that are naturally produced in the American southwest.” So researchers in Abouheif's lab led by PhD student Rajee Rajakumar and collaborators at the University of Arizona then started trying to artificially induce the production of these supersold...

Full article: http://www.celsias.com/article/ants-and-evolution-mcgill-...

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Loved this blog entry by Karen Cheng, so funny

Loved this blog entry by Karen Cheng, so funny

karencheng.com.au 15 Jan '12, 1am

My kids received two ant farms for Christmas. And on one BORING, hot stinking day, during the summer holidays, both my kid...