Entomology (Study of Bugs)/tiny red ants

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Question
What is the purpose of tiny red ants?  Do they help the environment in some way?  Thank you.

Sharon

Answer
Sharon,

I guess the only way I can answer this is with a question of my own. What is the purpose of any species including humans? Remembering that this is in the science section of AllExperts and not theology - current evidence supports the notion that extant species are the product of millions of years of evolution. Species are finely honed by evolution to fill a particular, and changing, ecological niche. Your tiny red ants fill a niche that no other species is currently exploiting. This is at least how I think about evolution. So if this concept is true then species don't exist for any purpose but rather because there was an ecological vacancy, and "nature deplores a vacuum".

Thanks for that philosophical sidetrack.

Jack DeAngelis

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Jack DeAngelis

Expertise

I can answer questions in any area of entomology (study of insects, spiders, mites, ticks, and other terrestrial arthropods). Contact me about home and garden insects, insects that bite and sting, and insects that damage homes such as carpenter ants and termites.

Experience

20 years as university extension entomologist, now retired; currently publish a website about home and garden insects.

Publications
see www.livingwithbugs.com/resume.html

Education/Credentials
Ph.D. in Entomology

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