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(National Geographic)   The enemy of my enemy is my cruel benefactor   (newswatch.nationalgeographic.com) divider line 27
    More: Interesting, tropical rain forests, University of Copenhagen, nests, research papers, fungus, Central and South America, ants  
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3847 clicks; posted to Geek » on 15 Sep 2013 at 4:00 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



27 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2013-09-15 04:16:51 PM  
Valve still can't count to 3.
 
2013-09-15 04:30:18 PM  
The paper concludes that much like the mercenaries used to defend cities in medieval Europe, the parasitic guest ants essentially form a "functional soldier caste" the benefit of which outweighs the strain they put on their hosts.

Why not the right analogy where the "guest ants" correspond to a hereditary nobility (often ethnically distinct) that is a parasite on the common folks with the only job of occasionally fighting. Mercenaries normally don't take over as rulers.
 
2013-09-15 04:33:03 PM  
The main difference, of course, is that these mercenaries are paid in fungus.

And the blood of the unborn. Which is slightly creepier.
 
2013-09-15 05:06:50 PM  
Is the term 'symbiosis' out of use? Isn't this just a sort of semi-symbiotic relationship?
 
2013-09-15 05:20:00 PM  
So the original colony is choosing security over freedom?

Is this whole paper an analogy of some kind?
 
2013-09-15 05:27:34 PM  

red5ish: Is the term 'symbiosis' out of use? Isn't this just a sort of semi-symbiotic relationship?



Dr. Wiki sez that some scientists reserve the term symbiosis for true mutualistic relationships while others include commensal or parasitic relationships.
 
2013-09-15 05:52:54 PM  
Maxim 29.  The enemy of my enemy is my enemy's enemy. No more. No less.
 
2013-09-15 06:05:00 PM  
These ants are like the US.  We invade, clip the queens wings, send her to work.. and kick the shiat out of any raiders of our new colony.
 
2013-09-15 06:14:46 PM  

JustHereForThePics: So the original colony is choosing security over freedom?

Is this whole paper an analogy of some kind?


Except it's not a choice.  The security is foist upon them, as they are relatively defenseless against attacks from other ant species.
 
2013-09-15 06:52:49 PM  
Benefactor ants.

Bants.
 
2013-09-15 07:26:01 PM  

HairBolus: The paper concludes that much like the mercenaries used to defend cities in medieval Europe, the parasitic guest ants essentially form a "functional soldier caste" the benefit of which outweighs the strain they put on their hosts.

Why not the right analogy where the "guest ants" correspond to a hereditary nobility (often ethnically distinct) that is a parasite on the common folks with the only job of occasionally fighting. Mercenaries normally don't take over as rulers.


Ants don't really have rulers. Humans call the big one the queen, but she's really more like your pregnant mom and it's up to you and your 1000s of sisters to help with the housework.
 
2013-09-15 07:27:12 PM  

wildcardjack: Maxim 29.  The enemy of my enemy is my enemy's enemy. No more. No less.


+1
 
2013-09-15 07:55:29 PM  
So it seems like the parasitic and are more like the Mafia. Yea, we'll take advantage of you but we'll also protect you, capisce?
 
2013-09-15 07:58:56 PM  
Ants invented the protection racket.
 
2013-09-15 07:59:01 PM  
I used to have a sadistic nurse that did much the same for my colon.  But in this case it was the enema of my enema.
 
2013-09-15 08:37:58 PM  

wildcardjack: Maxim 29.  The enemy of my enemy is my enemy's enemy. No more. No less.


Canteen delivery for henchman 15...
 
2013-09-15 08:43:49 PM  

doglover: HairBolus: The paper concludes that much like the mercenaries used to defend cities in medieval Europe, the parasitic guest ants essentially form a "functional soldier caste" the benefit of which outweighs the strain they put on their hosts.

Why not the right analogy where the "guest ants" correspond to a hereditary nobility (often ethnically distinct) that is a parasite on the common folks with the only job of occasionally fighting. Mercenaries normally don't take over as rulers.

Ants don't really have rulers. Humans call the big one the queen, but she's really more like your pregnant mom and it's up to you and your 1000s of sisters to help with the housework.


He means the invading mercenary ants are the rulers, as they command and tax the farmer ants. And yeah, they would be more like feudal lords than mercenaries, but the comparison is apt enough to get the point across.
 
2013-09-15 08:53:49 PM  

New Farkin User Name: they would be more like feudal lords than mercenaries


Except that they're not taxing or commanding the host colony, they're just there and eating what they please.

They're exactly like mercenaries, who roll up armed and armored, take the food, recruit the boys, rape the girls, and generally refuse to leave or do as they're told but are too formidable to unseat.

There's no hierarchy but size and strength here. They don't command the workers and just sit around. They have their own workers and they appear to help out their adopted colonies when other species invade.

Nothing like nobility. They work hard themselves and don't even have hats.
 
2013-09-15 08:55:09 PM  
An Arabic proverb attributed to a prince who was betrayed and decapitated by his own subjects.

/screw the haters, it was a good movie
 
2013-09-15 09:06:48 PM  

doglover: New Farkin User Name: they would be more like feudal lords than mercenaries

Except that they're not taxing or commanding the host colony, they're just there and eating what they please.

They're exactly like mercenaries, who roll up armed and armored, take the food, recruit the boys, rape the girls, and generally refuse to leave or do as they're told but are too formidable to unseat.

There's no hierarchy but size and strength here. They don't command the workers and just sit around. They have their own workers and they appear to help out their adopted colonies when other species invade.

Nothing like nobility. They work hard themselves and don't even have hats.


I suppose so, but in the world of ants, raping the girls and taking the food is basically taxing them. And god damn it, you're right, ants do need hats.
 
2013-09-15 09:15:43 PM  
Chemical weapons? Maybe the US should go in there and interfere with the war!!!
 
2013-09-15 09:21:15 PM  

New Farkin User Name: doglover: New Farkin User Name: they would be more like feudal lords than mercenaries

Except that they're not taxing or commanding the host colony, they're just there and eating what they please.

They're exactly like mercenaries, who roll up armed and armored, take the food, recruit the boys, rape the girls, and generally refuse to leave or do as they're told but are too formidable to unseat.

There's no hierarchy but size and strength here. They don't command the workers and just sit around. They have their own workers and they appear to help out their adopted colonies when other species invade.

Nothing like nobility. They work hard themselves and don't even have hats.

I suppose so, but in the world of ants, raping the girls and taking the food is basically taxing them. And god damn it, you're right, ants do need hats.


www.vlvstamps.com

She's so purty in her little top hat.
 
2013-09-15 09:51:07 PM  
"Did I say 'Overlords'? I meant 'Protectors"."
 
2013-09-15 09:59:05 PM  

skinink: So it seems like the parasitic and are more like the Mafia. Yea, we'll take advantage of you but we'll also protect you, capisce?


Actually most protection rackets did start off as real protection and it was like subscribing to a fire brigade. If you paid gang X to protect you and somebody Y robbed you then gang X would attack Y and maybe return to you what was stolen. It was only after crime bosses/families were able to establish exclusive territories that "protection" became protection from the people you were paying protection to.

As I like to mention, I think the whole nobility class/cast arose out of a protection racket - some cultures existed by raiding other more sedentary communities for food. The sedentary communities decided to pay tribute of food to keep from being killed and raped and then the raiders became sedentary within those communities as Nobel Protectors.
 
2013-09-15 11:05:25 PM  
The article says that the invader ants "clip the wings of virgin queens so that they don't fly off and start new colonies". This means that the 2 ant species are not involved in some sort of symbiosis.  The new queens that the ants are killing off are the colony's way of reproducing.  If the colony can never reproduce, then it serves no purpose biologically speaking and will soon enough be dead.  So the invader ants are parasites which destroy the host.
 
2013-09-15 11:28:34 PM  

2chris2: So the invader ants are parasites which destroy the host.


No, they allow enough to live as slaves that feed them.
 
2013-09-16 12:55:45 AM  
........ because the potency of their chemical weapons

that makes them the bad guys right there
the invaders #3 must be the good guys
 
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