What is it about?

We used an experimental suppression technique to see how much food resource was removed from old growth tropical rain forest. We found that half of the resource removal was by ants, a quarter by other invertebrates, and a quarter by mammals. This shows one more example of the importance of social insects in the tropics.

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Why is it important?

It is the first study that has calculated the impact of ants on scavenging processes. They are clearly more important than vertebrates in this tropical rainforest.


We didn't think this would work, as we had lots of technical difficulties. But it did and it worked very effectively. Even we were surprised about the relative importance of ants.

Dr Paul Eggleton
The Natural History Museum, London

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Ants are the major agents of resource removal from tropical rainforests, Journal of Animal Ecology, August 2017, Wiley,
DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12728.
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