A carpenter ant at home

Camponotus pennsylvanicus

Photographing the ants’ world from their perspective is challenging. Photography is about light, and ants spend most of their time in darkness. The image above is an attempt I made yesterday to capture this dynamic.


photo details:
Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 macro lens on a Canon EOS 7D
ISO 400, f/8, 1/160 sec
diffuse backlight strobe
ant inside section of nest log

10 thoughts on “A carpenter ant at home”

  1. Beautiful shot! I love the antennae and little wispy, beardy appendeges on its chin. (What are those called, again?)

  2. Wow, I just love ants. Thanks for a chance to begin to see into that part of their world. I’ve been thinking more about internal nest architecture as I start this intensive field season. I hope to get some good nest casts this season. But that is not the same view as the one you have captured.

  3. Alex, you ARE an artist no matter how much you protest otherwise, lol.

    Antweb is great – truly on the leading edge of new biological-information-science. Great work but now you could and should add a PDF science publications repository with hot-links back to the species specimens to complete the integrated whole. I only wish I had a few million to donate to make it happen !

  4. I like the picture, but I think non-myrmecophiles will interpret it as alien scary creature emerging from the darkness. The posture of the foreleg has a very predatory air.

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