How Do Ants Find Food?
During the warm months, ants find food in the form of plant-based foods. During the winter months, they stockpile food.
They’re also very efficient at bringing food together after they’ve found it. They use mandibles to cut up the food into smaller pieces, then transport the pieces to their nest.
During the process, they leave trails, or pheromones, to signal their presence. Pheromones are chemical scents that connect the nest to the food source.
Other ants in the colony may be summoned to the food hunt. Some ants have the ability to smell food from a distance. They are also capable of using their antennae to detect chemical compounds in the air. They may also use their legs to send signals.
The antennae on ants are four to five times more sensitive than those on most insects. They have olfactory neurons that send signals to the ant’s brain. The brain then makes sense of the odors in the air and on the ground.
The ant also has a chemosensor that can detect sugar and other attractant molecules. When they find food, they lay down pheromones to signal other worker ants where to find it.
The ant’s stomach stores food in liquid form. Its hindgut also absorbs nutrients and excretes waste. During the cold months, ants store food in their nest to stay warm.
In addition to the pheromone trail, ants have a number of other ways to get back to their nest. They’re also capable of using their antennae, legs, and mandibles to send signals.