Table of Contents
International Scholarly Research Notices
Volume 2016, Article ID 9473128, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2016/9473128
Research Article

Ants Can Expect the Time of an Event on Basis of Previous Experiences

Département de Biologie des Organismes, Faculté des Sciences, Université Libre de Bruxelles, CP 160/12, 50 avenue F. D. Roosevelt, 1050 Bruxelles, Belgium

Received 2 April 2016; Accepted 15 May 2016

Academic Editor: Zsolt Penzes

Copyright © 2016 Marie-Claire Cammaerts and Roger Cammaerts. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Working on three ant species of the genus Myrmica, M. ruginodis, M. rubra, and M. sabuleti, we showed that foragers can expect the subsequent time at which food will be available on the basis of the previous times at which food was present. The ants acquired this expectative ability right after having experienced two time shifts of food delivery. Moreover, the ants’ learning score appeared to be a logarithmic function of time (i.e., of the number of training days). This ability to expect subsequent times at which an event will occur may be an advantageous ethological trait.