How Ants Are Useful to Us
Thousands of naturalists have researched ants. Many of them have found that they are helpful to humans in various ways.
Ants live in many different places. They are found in deserts, swamps, and rain forests. They are a very active species and they will go after anything they can to provide themselves with food and energy.
One of the most common ways ants help us is through the pollination of plants. They help to increase the yield of crops. They are also good at pest control in farm fields.
There are many beneficial species of ants. Some, like the leaf-cutter ant, are important for maintaining the C/N ratio in the atmosphere. They maintain this balance by taking sap from the plant.
Ants also help to aerate the soil. This helps to allow water and nutrients to reach the plant roots. Some anthills are so large that they tower into the air. Some even have chambers that connect to one another.
Other species of ants are predatory. These ants will eat other insects. Some ants will even swarm on giant arthropods. This behavior is similar to that of wasps.
There are many mutualisms between ants and other species. These mutualisms can be both positive and negative. A positive interaction is one in which the benefits are shared by all parties involved. The negative species interaction is a situation in which one individual benefits from the other.
Another type of mutualism involves the spread of genes. Some species will lay eggs with clones of the queen. These offspring are known as parthenogenesis.