08 May 2013

Ants and aphids

You may have spotted a clue or two in this blog that I get most of my kicks from electronics and telecommunications. Nevertheless, having studied Biology at the University (fascinating science too), I frequently stop to admire the great work of Nature in all its diversity.
The other day I observed  what you can see in the photo (click on it to enlarge). The ants are seen "milking" the small dark-green aphids to get their honeydew (which they seem to greatly appreciate). The ants use their antennae to stimulate the aphids for this. They protect them from other insects that prey on them. This is called a "mutualistic relationship".

Now, you may wonder why I, being a radio amateur, like ants and other bugs. Easy: They use antennae, too!