Amazon of the Manu Ants and Termites
[tab: DESCRIPTIONS ]
Insect Architects in the Amazon Rainforest Trail Some insect constructions, particularly nests of social insects, rival human buildings in complexity. Ants, bees, wasps and termites are renowned for architectural skills. All social insects have a caste system delegating work in the nest to queens, workers, soldiers or drones. Each individual is efficiently communicated its task from chemical signals which emanate from the queen.
Wasps build. combs similar to those of bees but of chewed wood-pulp paper. A common wasp (Charges ) builds finger-shaped nests 2m long. Others, notably the potter wasp (Polybius ), use clay to build compact globular nests. Emaciate from Colombia molds a spherical clay nest about 10cm in diameter which, being covered in a cement of clay and sand, is virtually impenetrable, except via a small entrance or flight hole. Another species of the upper Amazon, singulars, has rectangular clay nests 30 x 15cm or larger, distinctive on account of the long slit like flight whole. English naturalist Bates described several species of potter wasps. Trypoloxon aura frons and . ablators are big black wasps that build little pot like structures much like those of mason wasps. Stingless bees (Meliponinae) build combs in nooks and crannies of trees such as the strangler fig. others use silk from their own larvae to weave nests from folded leaves. And precious dwellings should be protected. Certain tree-dwelling ants have a caste of doorkeeper ants. These stalwarts block the entrance-hole with square-shaped heads employed for no other task. some ants live on the outside of trees. Often seen on canoe rides, triangular mud nests are shaped around the underside of branches so rain does not enter and they point down to help the water flow off.
Termites . (Isoptera) are not ants but they are master builders. In dry areas their3m mud mounds are equipped with a queen’s chamber, living quarters, nurseries gardens, defensive walls, waste disposal and air-conditioning. In flooded forest termites build their ball-shaped nest up a tree trunk; lower down it could be washed away by floods. These nests employ delicate free-form architecture to maximize available space, minimize weight and maintain structural strength
Related to cockroaches, termites lack tannin in their chitin us shell so they are easily damaged by light. To avoid sunburn, they remain in the nest. To more afield, they construct long mud tunnels, sometimes tens of meters up a tree-trunk.