School of Ants at the Alice Springs Desert SMART EcoFair

School of Ants has recently been exploring the ants of arid Australia, and sharing ant stories with those at the Alice Springs Desert SMART EcoFair.

We connected with more than 80 students on the school workshop day, where both primary and high school students were able to learn about the diversity of weird and wonderful ants, collect ants from around the beautiful Olive Pink Botanic Gardens, and help build an ant city.EcoFair Collage

The sustainable living markets and fair on Sunday the 9th of August was a great chance to see the diversity of projects happening in central Australia aimed at living lightly in arid Australian country. School of Ants was privileged to have a 2 hour workshop on this day, in which more than 100 fair goers came to hear Kirsti talk and antennate at the same time! They did ant crosswords, made antennae, collected data for our project and some looked at the marvelous specimens under a microscope for the first time. The Australian Ant Art aluminium nest was once again a favourite – once you visualise what ants are doing underground, your world is changed.

Priceless are the smiles that creep across people’s faces as they realise that the ants they see everyday have iridescent green heads, beautifully sculptured thoraxes and deadly mandibles!

Contributions to the ant city on Sunday included fully loaded repletes of honeyants, as well as trails of leaf cutter ants. Love the creativity of participants!

EcoFair Collage2

Thanks ALEC and Olive Pink Botanic Gardens for having us at your EcoFair. We’d love to keep exploring arid Australian ants with you.

 


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