Daily Dose: Insect Architects

Add to TwitterAs humans, we have a tendency to think that we are the world’s primary source for innovation and creation. It stings our pride to think that we could be outshined by non-human animals… but insects? Well, the thought hardly crosses our minds! What could these tiny creatures possibly create that could hold a candle to our achievements? … to our architectural achievements? Take a look at these photographs of the incredible structures built by ants and termites –

ant-nest-plaster-cast

Plaster Cast of Ant Colony

This plaster cast of an ant colony was made by Walter Tschinkel, professor at Florida State University, who is studying ants’ architectural methods.

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Concrete Cast of Ant Colony

Scientists pumped 10 tons of concrete into the tunnels of this (thought to be) abandoned ant colony, creating the complicated structure you see in these images. Visit the source link to see the video of the process.

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Termite Colony and Buddhist Temple

Ants aren’t the only insects that are master architects. Termites, though markedly different as they build above the ground instead of tunneling into it, are also creators of amazing structures. This image reminded me of ancient Buddhist temples.

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Sources:

http://thinkorthwim.com/index/php?tag=ants
http://thinkorthwim.com/2007/05/01/plaster-cast-of-ant-nests/
http://www.pfspear.net/posts/2009/02/ant-architecture/

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