Ant behaving strangely

The ant pictured below is a member of the genus Rhytidoponera. The curious thing about it is that the creature is labouring to carry a shoot of moss [Pseudocrossidium crinitum].

Ant behaving strangely, Kalimna Park, February 2013











As far as we know, ants feed on other invertebrates and forage for such matter as honey. Moss somehow doesn’t fit the bill. The specimen above lugged its burden over difficult terrain for about a metre, then abandoned it. Any clues about this behaviour are welcome.

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1 Response to Ant behaving strangely

  1. Karl says:

    Perhaps the ant was intending to use the piece of moss to line the entrance to a nest? In the handbook ‘Ants, their biology and identification’, it states for Rytidoponera that ‘when in the open, nests range from low and messy mounds to large mounds decorated with stones and small twigs or leaves.’

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