Ants look much like termites, and the two are often confused—especially by nervous homeowners. However, ants have a narrow "waist" between the abdomen and thorax, which termites do not. Ants also have large heads, elbowed antennae, and powerful jaws. These insects belong to the order Hymenoptera, which includes wasps and bees. Enthusiastically social insects, ants typically live in structured nest communities that may be located underground, in ground-level mounds, or in trees. Carpenter ants nest in wood and can be destructive to buildings. Some species, such as army ants, defy the norm and do not have permanent homes, instead seeking out food for their enormous colonies during periods of migration.
Ant communities are headed by a queen or queens, whose function in life is to lay thousands of eggs that will ensure the survival of the colony. Workers the ants typically seen by humans are wingless females that never reproduce, but instead forage for food, care for the queen's offspring, work on the nest, protect the community, and perform many other duties. Meanwhile, the next — and more stressful — phase in the saga was yet to begin: my dealings with United. I naively expected that the company would want to provide some form of compensation — probably air miles or cash or something like that.
Things began benignly enough. They were trying hard to get better, she said. We discussed terms back and forth over several days I suggested they could throw the option of quick check-in, too, and why not entry to the club lounge every now and then until United said this was their final offer.
Sick ants stay clear of their co-workers to stop disease spreading | New Scientist
But things started to go pear-shaped. Another employee told me I had to sign an NDA and delete the tweets. This was news to me — and it was alarming. This all felt like a cynical case of seriously misplaced priorities. For starters, the tweets were already out in the world — that horse had bolted.
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Second, I am a writer by trade: asking me to delete something and sign an NDA was, as I put it to them, an offensive request. Nothing I had said was untruthful and, moreover, nothing I had said belonged to the company. Equally, offering compensation on the basis that I delete personal social media musings shifted the discussion from an apology into an attempt at an exchange.
The company was steadfast: I asked whether my refusal to delete the tweets meant that they would not offer me any form of tangible apology. The answer was yes. As far as I am aware, they did not contact other passengers to let them know that there had been insects on the plane. Their focus seemed squarely on me: more specifically, on my tweets. It was unnerving. The airline called the next day to see what deal I would take: airmiles or upgrades? I said, none. I write about the art market: what would happen, as a friend pointed out, if a painting fell out of a plane and I needed to report on it?
As an additional precaution, once the airplane landed at Newark it was taken out of service to ensure the issue was taken care of. We also followed proper protocol when the plane landed by notifying customs, immigration as well as agriculture of the issue. We will never know why on earth Bug Man had ants in his bag. United told me he was carrying a plant. All I know is that, as a passenger, it would have been nice to have faith that the airline knew how to deal with the insects. Ultimately, though, United took the stance that the ants roaming about on their airplane were not their issue to deal with.
Sick ants stay clear of their co-workers to stop disease spreading
They did, to be fair, pay my company a portion of the fare for the flight. I, of course, received nothing — but I did get a good story out of it.
Workers also collect honeydew and forage for sweet food, proteins, and fats. Nest locations can be a mound of up to 40 cm or next to objects found on the ground, e. If aggravated, these react aggressively and can inflict a painful sting, resulting in a pustule some 48 hours later. These ants are a major agricultural and urban pest, destroying crops and invading residential areas both outdoors and indoors.
Ghost Ant. Life Cycle Continuous breeding colonies. Habits Feeding — indoors: sweet substances and grease; outdoors: insects that produce honeydew. Nesting — indoors: small spaces, wall voids; outdoors: in flowerpots, under objects on the ground, under loose bark.
Do you Think you Have Ants?
Locations - attracted to high moisture areas, can be found in kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Colonies can occupy several different nesting sites. Odorous House Ant. Appearance Brown or black.
2. Male ants are pretty much just flying sperm
Antennae have 12 segments and are not terminated with a club. Lifecycle Time to adult phase of development is days. Typically live for several years. Habits Feeding - eat most household foods, especially sugary food, eg sweets and fruits such as melon. Also eat pet food.
Locations — attracted to moisture. In hot, dry environments nests can be found in house plants and even lids of toilets. Odour - produce a coconut smell when crushed. Colonies - range in size from , Appearance Workers 1. Males 3mm long, black, winged. Queens 3. Black eyes, 2 small segments at the pedicel. Life Cycle Multi-queen colonies.
Swarming can take place at any time of the year. Winged adults seldom fly so rarely seen. Wings are soon lost after mating. Habits Well—defined trails are laid which are often associated with heating systems. Feeds indoors on high protein foods — meat, fats, blood, dead insects, etc.