How Cold Before Ants Die
During wintertime, ants will huddle together to stay warm. Some ants will even take shelter underground. They have a special skill to stay warm that’s called “thermoregulation”. Ants can convert body fluids into glycerol, a substance found in antifreeze. Glycerol stops the formation of ice crystals in the ants’ bodies, thus preventing tissue damage.
A good shelter for ants is their home. It provides them with food and moisture, and it’s a safe place to stay. Ants will often scavenge in the desert when other animals have moved on.
They’ll also collect food from plants and crops. A good shelter for ants is also a good place to hide. They are clever enough to hide in walls, floors and cabinets.
An interesting ant behavior is called “diapause”. It’s a slow-motion, low-energy state that is similar to hibernation. They will not be active, but they will be aware of their surroundings. They will also stop eating.
The best part about diapause is that it doesn’t necessarily mean death. Some species, such as the acorn ant, will survive an extreme cold spell, and can do so with a little bit of planning.
In the real world, ants don’t actually die in winter, but they will reduce their activity. They will not do all the things they’ve done in the past, and will lay fewer eggs. They will also go the extra mile by taking extra precautions to ensure they don’t freeze to death.