Meet Sophie Schofield, Dr. Tom Bishop, and Dr. Kate Parr:
These three ant researchers wanted to know how drastically different environments impact functional traits in ants. So, they found out, and published their discoveries in Myrmecological News in September of last year.
The Daily Ant is launching a weekly series, Philosophy Phridays, in which real philosophers share their thoughts at the intersection of ants and philosophy. This is the first contribution in the series, submitted by Dr. Eli Hirsch.
As a philosopher who knows little about the details of evolutionary theory, I find it hard to understand questions about the evolution of ants. It seems often to be assumed that there are specific features that ants possess because of the “survival value” of such features. This makes very little sense to me. I find it very hard to believe that there are any features at all that can be viewed as having survival value for ants.
Recently, Tube Correspondant Katerina Theodossiou, who is currently undercover working in the United Kingdom, shared with The Daily Ant a series of observations of the T.V. show Santa Clarita Diet. The images she provided are reproduced below:
Every living thing needs nutrients. Much previous work has shown that a variety of soil nutrients – in particular Nitrogen (N), Phosphorous (P), and Potassium (K) – greatly impact plant communities. Often, human behaviors, especially agricultural practices like fertilization, have generated significant shifts in these nutrients. When environments become flushed with these nutrients, overall biomass typically increases but biodiversity often decreases. This is expected according to two hypotheses:
- Nutrient Limitation Hypothesis: Limitations in nutrients suppress abundance, and therefore increases in nutrients will drive increased abundance.
- Community Homogenization Hypothesis: Species that are most efficient at utilizing resources are prevented from completely excluding other species due to resource limitations. Therefore, increases in nutrients will allow these species to competitively exclude other species, decreasing overall diversity.
Justin Brierley is host of the “Unbelievable?” programme on the British Premier Christian Radio station. The programme covers […]
Six days ago, we featured a story about ant butts. Five days ago, we featured a quote from a […]
An oldie but a goodie, from Alex Wild:
Ants are dominant in a large number of terrestrial ecosystems on every continent outside of Antarctica. One of […]
On Thursday, Field Correspondant Natalia Piland, who is currently undercover as an evolutionary biologist studying birds in Peru, provided The […]
Today, the top news stories is the highly unusual – many would say wholly unjustified – silencing of […]
On Monday, University of Chicago student and Field Museum intern Destiny Reeves released a mesmerizing short titled “Antimation”. Like The […]
Perhaps the most widely-appreciated characteristic of ant colonies is their propensity for collective decision-making. How does a colony, with behavioral […]