Thursday, May 13, 2010

Today's Trivia - Ants Are Strong

Occasionally, I put out baked goods and cereals for the birds, which includes things like sandwich bread, bagels, English muffins, crackers, donuts, cookies and an assortment of breakfast cereals. All of these are things are leftover foods that no one is going to eat, and rather than throw them out, I invite my backyard critters to feast on them.

Squirrels, chipmunks and birds love when the menu offers these goodies; they eagerly run, hop and fly in to stuff their furry and feathery faces. And in addition to these animals, the ants also join in and carry off some of these delicacies, in huge amounts, might I add. I’ve seen some of them walking away with bagel pieces that are large enough to be a house.

Which brings me to today’s trivia.

Did you know that ants can carry items anywhere from 10 – 50 times their own body weight? This may not seem as remarkable as it sounds unless you apply the concept to us (weak) humans. For example, can you picture a 200-pound man carrying an item 30 times his weight, which would be 6000 pounds? I didn’t think so.

But that’s what ants do, which I personally think is pretty remarkable. Now, can you imagine coming face to face with an ant (if you were both the same size) and needing to defend yourself against it? You wouldn’t stand a chance.

And that’s all for this week’s trivia!


  1. Wow, that picture is amazing---I've never seen an ant carrying an entire leaf before. They really are fascinating to watch. When I was little (we lived in the country with no TV and no nearby neighbors), I loved just sitting on the ground and watching the ants go about their work. And I still like watching them, though I don't have the endless hours of free time I did as a small child. I wonder if children still spend time doing things like that?

  2. That really is a cool photo, Beth, but it's not mine. It's from a website that offers photos for free; I should credit it!

    I used to do the same when I was a kid. Things were different back then; kids spent a lot of time outdoors playing and enjoying nature. I don't think it's the same anymore; kids spend too much time indoors with their gizmos and gadgets. It's really sad.