What’s Inside an Anthill? 🐜

Henry Belcaster
Henry Belcaster
3 min read

Morning Ant Man!

You know how as a kid you’d see a lonely ant walking across the sidewalk?

It’d be on its way back to its loved ones carrying food

And then you randomly think:

‘What if I burn it?’

And you burn the ant to a crisp.

But you’re not done.

You go grab the nearest hose,

Walk over to the ant’s hill,

Shove the hose in it,

And flood every last ant living in that colony.


Just me?


Might wanna get that one psychoanalyzed in my next therapy session.

Anyway, if you ~hypothetically~ did do the above, what’s inside an anthill anyway?

(Learn from my sins and please just leave the ants alone).

So basically an anthill is just the tip of an enormous iceberg.

An iceberg that’s really just a giant ant baby nursery.

It all starts when the ant queen walks around casually laying 1500 EGGS PER DAY.

Now this creates quite the problem.

Babies are…babies!

If their home is too hot, they die.

And if it’s too cold?

They die!

These baby ants need to live in a very narrow temperature range to grow up.

Something like 75-95 degrees Fahrenheit.

Practically the whole purpose of the ant colony is to transfer these fricken temperature babies around all day.

Let’s break down how.

Remember when we said the anthill is like an iceberg?

Let’s go with ice cream cone instead.


Because we can.


The mound above ground – the ice cream scoop, if you will – warms from the heat of the sun:

The ant babies love to snuggle up in the mound’s toasty chambers to stay warm.

But they can’t stay there all day. It gets WAY too hot.

So that’s where the cone comes in.

Below the ice cream mound are several vertical shafts that plunge up to 6 feet underground.

So throughout the day, adult ants ferry the babies up and down these shafts.

Down to cool off during the day:

Up to warm during the night:

They’re chasing the perfect temperature for the babies.

Okay, but surely these massive ant colonies don’t exist for the sole purpose of raising babies, right?

Well they kinda do lolol.

Ants just sleep, eat, and do this baby temperature dance all day.

Okay, what about eating then?

Well the only other type of tunnel is a forager tunnel:

They’re horizontal passages buried just a few centimeters below the surface.


Well, scout ants use these passageways to look for food while staying underground for as long as possible.

Cause you know as soon as they come up to eat, they get…


Stay Cute,
Henry & Dylan 🌈

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