How My Ants Remarkably Survived a Famine

How My Ants Remarkably Survived a Famine


In the western regions of the Ant Room, in
the mystic kingdom known as the Plateaus of Gaia, a trap-jaw ant searches tenaciously
through the brush of the territories, for a suitable place to bury her recently dead
sister, but don’t be alarmed by this dead Jawbreaker. In our last video, featuring this ant kingdom,
we created the Plateaus of Gaia to be a self-feeding system, where we released a fattened colony
springtails to proliferate so the Jawbreakers can hunt them down and feed themselves. But to my surprise, almost three months later,
our springtails were nowhere to be seen. They had been over-hunted, leaving our trap-jaw
ants without a food source, but hold on, what may surprise you is that the trap-jaw ant
colony is still alive, and furthermore, has in fact doubled in size. But how did they manage to remain alive without
the springtails, on which their species specializes in eating? I look forward to showing you how, AC Family. It’s time to marvel at ant resourcefulness. Welcome everyone to the AntsCanada Ant Channel! Please subscribe to my channel and hit the
bell icon. Welcome to the AC Family. Enjoy! Alright, AC Family! Here’s the thing. So it turns out our trap-jaw ants exhausted
their own food supply, and to be fair, many of you guys called it in our last video: “I do like the self-sustained concept but
I doubt springtails and flies are enough to keep the colony fed.” “I just thought maybe it might be too hard
for the Jawbreakers to hunt springtails only?” “Will springtails be enough to sustain a big
colony?” “I don’t think the Springtails are enough
or reliable as a long term main food source though…” “Are you sure the Springtails will provide
enough sustenance for the Jawbreakers? I mean, they are hard to catch, and they aren’t
that big…” At the time, I wasn’t worried because these
ants are specialized at eating tiny insects like Springtails in the wild, and based on
how prolific they’d been in our other ant kingdoms, I was confident our self-feeding
Plateaus of Gaia biological engineering project was going to work out beautifully. But, when I noticed that the Springtails continued
to dwindle down in numbers despite me continually adding organics and even roaches, I began
to fear that our plans had failed and the Jawbreakers were on the brink of death. But, guys, ants are survivors, and the Jawbreakers
are no exception! They’ve doubled in size. Keep on watching until the end, to find out
where they’ve been getting their sustenance. In the rubble of the feeding pit, lay the
exoskeletal remains of cockroach carcasses, laid here in hopes to nourish the Springtails
which have now gone extinct in these lands, but peeking out from beneath the debris, is
a Jawbreaker ant greeting the fresh evening air. In fact, the Jawbreakers have been quite busy
excavating their underground fortress throughout the Plateaus since we last saw them. I love the various nest entrances they’ve
created leading to their underground tunnels, like this one here. Or these two entrances here and here. But the most active nest entrances are down
in the feeding pit. Check them out! I noticed the ants had created a canyon type
nest structure allowing the ants to move in and out of various nest holes without actually
being “outside”. Look at them in there! Now judging from the amount of ants I see
at the surface, I estimate that the ant colony has definitely doubled in size, at least. Jawbreakers appeared pretty busy in those
holes, and wait I do see some Springtails in there, too. So they weren’t extinct! And hey, a Jawbreaker was pulling a roach
leg from inside the nest? Hmmm… Could the ants be feeding from the roach body
parts I put in to feed the Springtails? Usually, I place into the Plateaus of Gaia
pieces of watermelon and dried up roach carcass leftovers from my other ant colonies. I figured the ants weren’t eating the roach
carcasses because first, from past experience with other trap-jaw ants in the past, the
roaches were much too big too eat, and also much too dry. Ants usually need their food to have some
kind of wetness to it, which is why I usually freshly pre-kill my prey insects when feeding
my ants, and don’t feed dried insects. It ensures the ants can properly suck up all
that gooey insect prey guts. So dried roaches? There was just no way, in my mind, the Jawbreakers
were eating any dried up flesh from them. Springtails, yes, ants, no. So for once, I placed in, just for kicks a
proper, freshly killed roach part, to see if the ants were willing to accept such large
prey. It wasn’t long before it was discovered, and
a few ants came inspecting this sudden fresh roach carcass, taking a few strikes at it
in various places. They seemed more intrigued and curious about
the roach, as opposed to interested in its potentiality as food. I knew it was too big for them! And then, what happened next got me rolling
on the floor laughing like crazy. Watch this. Wait for it… Wait for it… Boing! The trap-jaw used its jaw force to chomp down
on the roach’s exoskeleton and in the process launched her outwards. She around, seemingly disoriented from the
self-catapult. Haha! As the ants continued to pull and prod on
the roach, it was clear to me that the ants were likely trying their best to first off
kill this still moving thing, inconveniently on Jawbreaker territory, a move it out of
the way. I caught one ant taking a drink from the hemolymph
of the roach, but it didn’t look like, this roach was a popular item to the Jawbreaker’s
palate. This made sense, because trap-jaw ants are
known to feed only on tiny insects, not huge kills like this. Or so it seemed, AC Family, until I saw this. Have a look! This ant here. I was surprised to watch her proceed to rip
a chunk off the roach guts and proceed to carry it into the nest. Hey, wait a sec! So the trap-jaw ants were able to eat from
large prey if given the chance! Alright, but this still didn’t explain how
the ant colony was able to sustain itself for close to three months on dried roaches,
and enough to increase in numbers! What was the missing character? I decided to ponder on this for a bit, and
watered the Plateaus as I do every other night, and allowed the ants to continue doing their
thing. I was determined to get some answers. In the middle of the night, I returned to
the Plateaus to check up on the Jawbreakers. Ants were busy on the prowl. The added moisture from the watering earlier
had made it ideal for the ants to dig more tunnels. I loved that they were expanding their network
of canyons and ant hills, and were even improving on holes in the highlands. As for the roach, the ants were still working
on it. Not sure what they’d finally decided to do
with this roach, but it did seem like they were kind of eating. But it still didn’t make sense to me how a
colony that was doing so well, seemed to be thriving off no apparent food. I saw an ant carrying a dead member. Not sure if this was the same ant we saw earlier,
but it did seem she was looking for their ant graveyard. Speaking of which, I couldn’t find where their
ant graveyard was! Strange… There was something going on here, AC Family,
and I was determined to figure out what. Little did I know, I would… The next morning, and it was an incredible
discovery I did not expect! It was a normal day in the Plateaus of Gaia. New ant hills built over night, bubbled from
the territory’s soil surface. Ants were still busy with construction, proudly
building new tunnels and entrances for their growing ant colony. But what about the roach carcass? The roach guts had all dried now, but it did
seem the ants had managed to remove a few chunks of roach meat from it. A few ants even came to pick at it here and
there, but I knew the roach would be useless to the ants now that it was all dried up. It would soon join the collection of roach
carcasses, I added to the lands in hopes to feed the Springtails. But as I began to watch the ants busying themselves
from within their tunnels, suddenly something dawned on me, hitting me like a tonne of bricks. AC Family, I believe I had found the missing
character! What was really going to happen to this dried
roach carcass? Looking at the ants now, I could never have
guessed that the Jawbreakers had much bigger plans for this roach, than any of us had ever
imagined! AC Family, watch this! I caught this ant ripping off a chunk of roach
meat, it still was a bit slimy, but watch what she does. She leaves it right at the entrance and heads
back to the roach. Ok? An ant smelled it but left. Another ant came to inspect, no interest. Were they just going to leave the piece there? Eventually, an ant came and carried it into
the darkness of the nest. The ant then manages to extract another piece
of dried roach meat, and it looked like it was storing it somewhere and then emerging
to return to the roach. So they were storing the pieces of roach meat
and not consuming them right away. In an ordinary case of ant vs dead prey insect,
the ants would be consuming the prey insect guts and then feeding it to the rest of the
ant colony via trophallaxis, i.e. mouth to mouth food transfer. But in this case, the ants were treating the
food like a sort of item of importance, not for eating on the spot, but for later use. Later use for what, though? AC Family, I had an inkling the answer lay
in those tunnels. I attempted to get in and carefully uncover
what was inside one of their busiest of nest entrances, but I was met with gnashing trap-jaws
and aggressive ants whom I feared would climb my tweezers and show me who was boss. So instead, I started to dig and prod around,
and AC Family, check out what I found when I dug deep into one spot that seemed to house
a lot of mites. I had hit a tunnel, then a chamber, and in
that moment, I found our missing character. An old roach carcass? Deep in their nest? But it wasn’t the sight of the roach carcass
that solved the mystery. It was the Springtails I spotted feasting
on it! OMG! AC Family, the Jawbreakers were culturing
their Springtails underground within their nest! This was sheer ant brilliance! I covered up the chamber so they could continue
to use it. AC Family, this is how the ants had managed
to survive all this time on dead, dried roaches! The Springtails weren’t gone! They were just all underground! The ants would collect pieces of dead roach
and culture the springtails underground where, I imagine the springtails were much easier
to catch! Wow! Isn’t that crazy? This was the only explanation I could think
of, but it made complete sense. Mystery solved! And about the lack of an apparent graveyard
in the territories, I bet the ants collect any dead ants they may find above ground,
and bury them underground in their springtail farms, to feed the springtails. Talk about efficiency, right? So AC Family, it seems the Plateaus of Gaia
turned out to be much more complex than we ever imagined. We had certain plans for the way its biological
system would work, but the ants improved on our initial design and came up with something
a heck of a lot cooler! This entire story has proven something we
discover, time and time again in the Antiverse, and that is, that despite our belief that
we can understand nature’s principles enough to dictate how a created system would work,
nature is still, and always will be, the head architect, and is the one signing off, on
the final blue prints. Now speaking of incredible workings happening
underground, there’s a new plot of soil in the Antiverse which houses a few creatures
that I am positive you guys will truly marvel at. Creatures that I have yet to feature on this
channel, and I can’t wait to show our new incubating creatures! Yes, AC Family! Did you enjoy this week’s episode? Don’t the Jawbreakers just blow your mind
with their surprise plans? And also, I can’t wait to show you our new
arrivals in the ant room! Guys, guaranteed you will never guess what
they are, or maybe you will! But you know the drill! Hit that Subscribe button and bell icon now,
so you don’t miss out on next week’s episode when I reveal these mystery creatures, which
have something to do with the ant kingdoms, and hit the Like button every single time,
including now. And hey, if you’re new to the channel, and
want to catch up on all your AntsCanada Lore, feel free to binge watch this complete story
line playlist here, which traces the origins of all the ant colonies of the ant room, so
you can follow their stories and better appreciate how these ant kingdoms came to be, and why
we love them so much! AC Inner Colony, I have left a hidden cookie
for you here, if you would like clues as to what our new mystery creatures are, to be
introduced in next week’s episode. Maybe you can be the first to guess correctly,
what creatures we will be introducing to the channel. And before we proceed to the AC Question of
the Week, I’d like to plug my daily vlogging channel, daily vlogs which have become a full
out bird dad channel, as I am now raising a baby African Grey parrot! If you love birds, I’d love for you to meet
my new cute little bird! She’s quite the character, loves to cuddle,
is quite chatty, and is fun to watch grow up! Hope you can subscribe when you’re there. And now it’s time for the AC Question of the
Week! Last week we asked: Name one of the three things
needed to be done to maintain the main island of Avista. Congratulations to Lazer X Stinger who correctly
answered: One of the main things needed to
maintain avista is to water it. We also accepted shaping the branches and
feeding of insects. Congratulations, Lazer X Stinger, you just
won a free e-book handbook from our shop! In this week’s AC Question of the Week, we
ask: What made it easier for
the ants in this video to dig more tunnels? Leave your answer in the comments section
and you could also win a free e-book handbook from our shop! Hope you can subscribe to the channel as we
upload every Saturday at 8AM EST. Please remember to LIKE, COMMENT, SHARE, and
SUBSCRIBE if you enjoyed this video to help us keep making more. It’s ant love forever!

100 thoughts on “How My Ants Remarkably Survived a Famine”

  1. Greetings, AC Family! I was mind-blown filming this week's video. How about you guys? Aren't ants just brilliant? Guys, if you enjoyed this video hope you can remember to LIKE, COMMENT, SHARE, and SUBSCRIBE (hit the bell). I upload a new epic ant (or other critter) video every Saturday 8AM EST! So can you guess what creatures we'll be meeting next week? Ant love forever!

  2. Ants grow crops, they raise livestock for byproducts and now it is apparent that they raise livestock for meat as well. No wonder the call them ant farms!

  3. AC family, can some one help me find the full video of the footage filmed at 4.40-4.43. I'm driving myself crazy looking and I love that video. Thank you.

  4. At first I thought the ants were eating the other ants. πŸ˜… so glad I was wrong.
    🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜🐜

  5. What a horrifying life for those springtails πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ Their overlords are feeding them and raising them for food.

  6. Wait till you see smoke coming from the nest, and finding a piece of a tiny branch with tiny scratches all over it.

  7. Me:i think the springtail has all died
    Ant:are you just kidding me i am farming it-_-
    Anoter ant:emengercy emengercy intruder just break into the spring coakcurojas farm
    Me:(see the springtails) …

  8. I found this very interesting but I'm not too surprised since wild ant raise plant aphids all the time were I live. it's actually quite hard to send them away when they attack your favorite plan

  9. I am starting to find your newer video's seem too… over dramatic? I liked your earlier informational type videos vs you attempting to reach the highest climax possible every. single. time.

  10. I was wondering if they maybe were re-hydrating the roach meat in their moist soil when they needed it most. Would be cool

  11. Before I joined the ac family I hated ants and wanted to kill them now I realize what I was doing wrong.

  12. I saw the Jawbreaker carrying her deceased sister and immediately had a flashback to that one Black Dragon, who is probably still looking for the perfect spot to bury her own sister.

  13. This is a typical case of a sigmoid model (densodependent), whose equation is as follows

    dN / dT = r.N ((K-N) / K)

    Where N (number of individuals); T (time) r (fertility rate = mortality + birth rate) and K (load capacity).

    At the time that you put the ants (i guess a few weeks after) you reach the point K / 2 (point of greatest growth), which continued advancing until you reach K, which expresses the maximum number of trap-jaw ants (Odontomachus sp.) that can live in the place depending on the available resources. As the size of the population increases, the birth rate decreases and mortality increases. There will come a time when the number of ants is lower and the number of springtails begins to increase due to the death of ants and the cycle will repeat itself.
    Sorry if i went FULL nerd on this. Btw this terrarium is amazing.

  14. 7:00 πŸ€” the roach doesn't seem dead, they can live a good amount of time without a head. So I don't know if it's even possible to pre-kill roaches with minimal damage to the body's surface area

  15. 12:30 so does that mean if they feed the springtails dead ants from their colony and then eat the springtails doesn't that mean it is technically cannibalism?

  16. You need to do a much better job killing the roaches. They shouldn't be still moving around with the intelligence being shown.

  17. good starter ant for someone living in south east us? i've owned several snakes and other reptiles and a tarantula so I'm not brand-new to taking care of 'exotic' pets if you will.

  18. I'm halfway through. I need to guess. Are they feeding the spring tails the food you you put in but taking it underground where it's more convenient?

  19. ac family, ac family, ac family, AC FAMILY, AC FAMILY…. ENOUGH ALREADY you legit say ac family about 50 times a video ive counted 5 times in 3 mins. come on man love the vids but its the most annoying thing! i cringe everytime i hear AC FAMILY

  20. leaf cutters have always been my favorite humble and assosiative although trap-jaws are awesome again i'm a male boy also i'm interested in aquatic and prehestoric life

  21. omg secret ant farm my theory of ant colony sucssess come true! man i wish i spent the 3 months of being ill observing my local ant nest

  22. they learned to farm. If they were larger they would take over for humans. Bet there is a planet out there that it has happened and they are more advanced than us.

  23. At this point, I think it's safe to think that one of these ants will be like their Elon Ant, and make a rocket…

  24. WEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!! Hahahaha πŸ˜†πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ’πŸ’ oh, that had me oh, thank you the thought of a flying ant had never EVER crossed my mind oh, so good πŸ˜†πŸ˜πŸ’ xxxxxx

  25. Awesome, this is one of the couple of videos that has made me want to keep ants, we already have a plethora of wild local animals we live to care for, I'll be contacting AC for some stuff to start my colony soon, before watching you I never knew how satisfying a captive colony could be, great vids Ant Canada very entertaining and Informative, πŸ‘πŸ‘ŒπŸ‘

  26. I have a newfound appreciation for ants because of antscanada.. well done mikey.. πŸ‘πŸΌπŸ‘πŸΌπŸ‘πŸΌ

  27. I wasn't worried about the trap jaw ants running out of food cuz I've already heard of ants raising other insects like cattle and ants also grow plants to

  28. these ants are evolving maybe in billions of years they can make phones and we will make pease with the ants and then BAM the ants are hightech

  29. Have no idea how I ended up in the ant castle, but been watching videos back to back. I but I'm hooked. Also, great job narrating, music, fonts… It's amazing!

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