Aphaenogaster - Alex Wild Photography
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Aphaenogaster fulva

Aphaenogaster fulva

Some plants have come to rely so heavily on ants to spread their seeds about that they offer the insects a tasty treat in exchange for the dispersal service. Seeds of these species bear a lipid-filled structure called an elaiosome, whose sole function appears to be the attraction of ants. Here, an Aphaenogaster disperses bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis) seeds. Urbana, Illinois, USA

fulvarudisAphaenogasterMyrmicinaeformicidaeantsinsectshymenopterainsectbloodrootelaiosomemyrmecochoryseedsseedecologyentomologyplants