[ExI] ants again

spike spike66 at att.net
Mon Jun 30 03:52:20 UTC 2008

There are some types of ants that farm aphids.  The aphids extract juices
from trees and produce a sweet nectar, the ants collect and presumably
devour the nectar; in turn the ants nurture the aphids by protecting them
from predators etc.  This mutually beneficial interrelationship is way cool;
still I wish to have the sons a bitches out of my citrus trees.  They may be
sapping energy from the trees and contributing to my paltry fruit yield.
There was a steady stream of ants going up and down the trunk.  I applied a
sticky substance in a ring around the trunk to create a barrier; ants in the
tree can no longer get to the ground and vice versa.  This afternoon I
noticed that the ants in the tree have abandoned their aphids.  The ants
apparently have no means of making the intuitive leap to say: oh, to hell
with getting back to the nest, I will just devour the aphid nectar and live
up here.
Our peak oil discussion reminds me of the plight of the ants trapped in the
fruit trees.  The ants could theoretically survive if they made a sudden
radical change in their collective behavior in response to the change in
conditions.  But they can't do it.  They are screwed.
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