Continuing our series of First-Ever-Photographs, after some research I suspect I have taken the first live images of the African tree-dwelling ant Terataner:
If you know of other photographs, speak up! I’ve been unable to find any online, nor in the scant technical literature on this genus.
The crew at Ant Course 2012 collected a twig nest of Terataner elegans along the roadside entrance to the Makerere University Field Station in Uganda, letting me borrow it for a few photographs before the ants were pickled for Cal Academy’s research collections. I had never seen live Terataner before. They reminded me a great deal of the related Australian genus Podomyrma, as both are muscular arboreal insects.
That images of these ants are exceedingly rare is not some boast of my photographic prowess; rather, it’s an observation on the paucity of African ant research relative to just about anywhere else in the world. Africa holds great promise for discovery.