IUCN threat status:

Not evaluated

Functional Adaptations

Read full entry

Functional adaptation

Squeezing larvae provides glue: weaver ants
 

Weaver ants glue their nests together using silk squeezed from their larvae.

   
  "Another insect tool user is the weaver ant (Oecophylla smaragdina), which makes nests by rolling up leaves and then gluing the sides together with silk. Although it is the adult ants that do this, only the larvae produce silk, so how is the process of leaf gluing achieved? In fact, the adults carry larvae in their jaws and squeeze them gently so that the larvae secrete a drop of silk on one end of the leaf edges. The ants then carry the larvae along the entire length of the leaf edges, squeezing as they go, using the larvae like living bottles of glue, until the edges of the leaves are stuck together from end to end." (Shuker 2001:191)

Watch video
  Learn more about this functional adaptation.

Trusted

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© The Biomimicry Institute

Source: AskNature

Disclaimer

EOL content is automatically assembled from many different content providers. As a result, from time to time you may find pages on EOL that are confusing.

To request an improvement, please leave a comment on the page. Thank you!