A big start to 2015 for School of Ants Australia!

 

2014 saw the launch of our website and collections of ants coming in from NSW, QLD, VIC and TAS. We partnered with great people and projects to co-present Little Things That Run the World as a National Science Week event. You can see what a great project it was in THIS VIDEO!  We conducted our first AntBlitz, and are still identifying specimens!!  It’s a busy place is our lab.

Bringing in the catch

But School of Ants is off and [tandem*] running into 2015 already!

Our project has featured in WILD magazine online, will have an update in Australian Geographic, and Dr Kirsti Abbott spent a whole hour talking on ABC radio in Conversation with Richard Fidler this week. You can listen to the podcast here. We’ve also had some new registrations for our year-long synchronous citizen science project; individuals who will collect data for us on the same day every month.

We’re happy little ants.

And we’re going ON TOUR! Yes, School of Ants is travelling the country. Because ants are EVERYWHERE, we figured that all Australian citizens had a duty to know about ants, and help us collect information on their diversity, distribution and diet. We’re particularly excited to be working with lots of Indigenous Australians who we’re anticipating will have some fabulous knowledge and stories about ants in Central Australia, Far North Queensland, and the Northern Territory and Western Australian outback.

We are visiting schools with the aim to share knowledge about ants; their role in our ecosystems, culture and society. We will also collect data for our project and do some great science, peer down microscopes, make ant t-shirts and become ants for some challenging games based around the social structure and altruism of ants.

The trip will go something like this: western NSW, Fraser Island coast, Longreach, Cairns & Cape York, down through Mt Isa to Alice Springs, north to Darwin, west around WA, then across the bottom through Port Augusta and schools in regional VIC.

Data collecting for our 2015 SYNCHRONOUS CITIZEN SCIENCE project starts Wednesday 25th of February, so if you’d like to be involved, or would like to confirm a visit to your school (there’s very limited places!) GET IN TOUCH QUICK!  Email us at catchme@schoolofants.net.au

REGISTER TO DO SOME SCIENCE IN 2015 BY CLICKING THE REGISTER TAB ABOVE!

 

*tandem running is a behaviour displayed by ants to recruit to a food source. Once ant runs back to the nest and grabs one other ant who runs beside her to the food, in tandem. J


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