Sunday, May 5, 2013

Resistance Is NOT Futile

There is a black ant that raids an amber colored ants' broods and steals their young brood ants to then serve as slaves raising the young of the black ants. The lives of these slave ants are seemingly at an evolutionary dead end for their species.  That is until it was realized that the slave ants were "turning the tables" on their masters by neglecting and killing the black ants' young in the process of supposedly caring for them. The mortality rate for black brood ants is 60% where slave ants are the caregivers; but, where black ant colonies do not use slave ants, the mortality rate is only 20%. Thus, it seems that while mutinous ant slaves may not be able to save themselves, by rebelling they reduce the number of slave masters who prey on nearby relatives.