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Archive for May, 2007

Working in Central Australian and Saharan desert over the last few years had made me numb to the heat. The extent to which it has affected me is something I am realising now, as I am now starting field work in Canberra. Not used to it yet, but I am sure it will grow on me!

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My first back to back articles on ants have been published in the Journal of Experimental Biology! Both articles address the unique navigation strategies of the thermophilic Australian desert ant, Melophorus bagoti. Unlike any animal that has been studied so far, these ants have an extraordinary ability to consistently travel half their return distance towards the nest by relying on their path-integrator.


More in these two articles:
Narendra A. 2007. Homing strategies of the Australian desert ant Melophorus bagoti I. Proportional path integration takes the ant half-way home. Journal of Experimental Biology 210: 1798-1803. [abstract].

Narendra A. 2007. Homing strategies of the Australian desert ant Melophorus bagoti II. Interaction of the path integrator with visual cue information. Journal of Experimental Biology 210: 1804-1812. [abstract].

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The sixth ANeT conference (International Network for Ant Research in Asia) will be hosted by Dr Himender Bharti at the Punjabi University, in India from October 10-13, 2007. Deadline for abstract submission: August 15. More here

The exciting discovery I made was this group is coming out with an ant journal, ASIAN MYRMECOLOGY; the first volume due any soon!

Cool cool!!

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An excellent article on Bull ants (Myrmecia gulosa) by Mark W Moffett, with support from the Dinosaur Ant (Nothomyrmecia macrops) discoverer, Bob Taylor, is a feature article in National Geographic. View it here

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