Wood Ants Orient to Magnetic Fields
We report here, the first evidence that ants Formica rufa L. exhibit a magnetic compass response. For a period of seven days, foragers were trained to visit a food source accessed through a choice chamber situated inside a solenoid. When all other orientational cues were eliminated, the distribution of ants entering the choice chamber was significantly heterogeneous; a majority visiting the previous location of the food source. Energization of the solenoid, causing a 90 degrees rotation of the magnetic field, resulted in a significant proportion of ants orienting to the altered field.
Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B
- Pub Date:
- July 1995