Did you know that today is International Rock Flipping Day?
The idea is to go outside, flip over a few rocks, and record what you see. The resulting posts will be published at Wanderin’ Weeta.
After looking under a couple of rocks, I posted about most of the creatures I discovered (including a very cool case-bearing larvae) at Growing With Science. Of course flipping rocks is a fabulous way to find ants (and “experience” ants in other ways, too), so let’s take a look at what ants were hiding under rocks today.
The area I chose has mowed grass with a brick edging around it, as well as some rocks piled up in a drainage ditch. It isn’t uncommon to see Forelius running along the edging, so it was no surprise to find a few under the rocks as well.
Southern fire ants were in full force, too.
I was surprised how much more red these show that the ones in my yard a football field-length away.
I managed to get stung while taking this photograph. (Flipping rocks does has its hazards.)
Of course, Dolichoderinae don’t sting.
But they are more than willing to bite.
At least it was sitting still, so it is in focus 🙂
Did you participate in International Rock Flipping Day? What did you find?
2 Replies to “International Rock Flipping Day: The Ants”
A great way to find some ants, especially when it gets sunny after a cool rain, or in the mountains. Often in the desert, rocks heat up so much and the soil under them dries out so fast that ants and other burrowing crittters don’t stay under them for long.
Please remember to replace the rock gently to its original position.
Yes, that is a good reminder.
For a list of all the participants of IFRD, check http://wanderinweeta.blogspot.com/2011/09/we-haz-critters-irfd-5.html