Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘Benjamin Franklin’

ants

A social structure that designates its older females as warriors instead of its younger males certainly bears closer scrutiny.  Ants are among the hardest workers in the animal kingdom.  They’re organized with a highly functional and specialized workforce.  Their perseverance alone would put most human workers to shame.

Have you ever noticed how quickly every ant in a colony will diligently get to work when disaster strikes and their mound is disturbed?  They don’t fall into depression or accept defeat.  They keep on building and working towards their goals.

Another quality that makes them so efficient is that they are such excellent communicators.  Much of this is done through the use of pheromones, chemical signals picked up by the ants’ antennae.  But they don’t just let one another know about danger.  They also share information about what work needs to be done and where food can be found.  If one ant finds out that your kitchen is a great spot for dining on sweets, then she’ll tell two friends and they’ll tell two friends and before you know it you’re overrun with ants.  And all without the benefit of Twitter.

ant eggs

All worker ants are female which may explain their superior communication skills.  Males can be distinguished by their two sets of wings.  Queens, while being larger, also have wings which are discarded after mating.

Ants are preyed upon mostly by amphibians, birds and spiders.  Bats usually catch the male ants in flight.  In my yard, flickers have to be the ants’ worse enemy.  These are woodpecker-like birds that have a special long tongue similar to the one anteaters have.  They’re able to dig holes in the ground and catch numerous ants, pupae (the cocoon from which adults emerge) and eggs with this raspy tongue.  The holes are everywhere in my lawn.

hole made by flicker

Ants survive Nova Scotia winters by going deeper underground or into dead trees where they receive some protection from the cold.  Worldwide, they’re found on every continent except Antarctica.

No one preaches better than the ant and she says nothing.

~ Benjamin Franklin

Receive by email or subscribe in a reader

Read Full Post »

license plate

Along with an image of the Bluenose schooner, our Nova Scotia license plates have ‘Canada’s Ocean Playground’ written on them. Water is everywhere here: in the sea that surrounds us almost completely, the lakes that dot the province inland and the misty bogs that are found in the spaces between. To live in Nova Scotia is to know water. Our history and lore is full of fishermen, sailors and privateers, men who made a living at sea.

But you don’t need to be a Bluenoser to know water. You just need to live on the planet. Water is everywhere and where it is most rare, there it is also most precious.

water water

Water images from our recent scavenger hunt reveal the variety of ways water infiltrates our psyches.  Jessica from The Magical Mundane offered that “Water is a feminine, flowing element associated with patience and quiet strength, but it can also generate fear with its power.”  Dawn‘s image at centre, of a fish in water, is from Australia, where water resources are highly vulnerable to climate change.

When the well is dry, we know the worth of water.

~ Benjamin Franklin

Water’s colors range from bright aqua to the darkest of blue-blacks with everything in between.  It is also transparent.  Fluid and adaptable, water conforms itself to whatever shape will hold it:  crystals in snow, or droplets in clouds and rain, fruits and flowers and swimming pools.  Water also makes up most of our human bodies.  We are water itself.

If there is magic on this planet, it is contained in water.

~ Loren Eiseley

License plate photo credit:  woody1778 at Flickr

Water images photo credits:  A Midsummer’s Scavenger Hunt

Receive by email or subscribe in a reader

Read Full Post »

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: