They can lift 5,000 times their body weight. They have armies in the thousands. And they outnumber us a million to one. But ants are tiny, right? Yeah, that’s not going to be a problem. Uh oh, what’s that sound?
How much damage are giant ants going to cause? Could we fight back? Or are we doomed to serve them?
Even at a small size, ants are already terrifying. To start with, they are legion. Some fire ant colonies contain over 200,000 ants, all ruled by a single queen. And they’re ready to go to battle at a moment’s notice.
But now, be it through some mad science or horrifying evolution, these creepy crawlies have blown up to over 3 m (10 ft). That’s the size of an African elephant.
We’re in serious trouble. The invasion has begun. Our planet is overrun with giant ants. You either submit to the new queen or die.
But come on, you say, this is Earth, and we’ve got the world’s military forces. Why don’t we stand our ground and fight it out?
Well, the giant ants aren’t afraid of some little human weapons. And to make their point, the ants would use a pheromone to call in their buddies for backup. You’d be seriously outnumbered.
Even if you brought out the big guns, ants have an extremely large exoskeleton and can take a lot of punishment. Giant ants could cause massive deforestation and destruction while roaming, eating, and expanding their populations. They could reshape the entire continent based on how they build their ant colonies.
Any fields or open spaces would be turned into small colonies in days, and slowly those would expand and become a vast network of underground tunnels.
If each ant was the size of an elephant, about 4 m (13 ft) in height, the mounds would have to be over, hang on, let me do the math.
Humans would no longer be the apex predator. It’s the giant ants’ turn now. We know ants are aggressive creatures, and they will attack any perceived threat.
Giant ants would attack mountain lions, bison, and any other animals that got in their way. Thankfully, it’s just the stuff of sci-fi.
In all honesty, ants would not fare well being the size of elephants. And it’s all because of the square-cube law. In a nutshell, it means the volume of an ant will grow faster than its surface area.
If an ant were to blow up to the size of an elephant, the square-cube law could affect its ability to function or even hold itself up with its current body structure. For an ant to make it giant-sized, it would have to change its whole body structure. At that point, it wouldn’t even be an ant anymore.
You know, just some new terrifying giant monster. Ugh, I’m glad that’s over. I tell you, I am sick and tired of giant bugs. I mean, it could have been worse, right? It could have been giant spiders!
- “Ants Can Lift Up To 5,000 Times Their Own Body Weight”. Entomology Today.
- “How Strong Would A Man-Sized Ant Be? | Curious Meerkat”. Asher, Claire. 2010. Curious Meerkat.
- “Most Dangerous Ant”. 2021. Guinness World Records.
- “The March Of The Giant Ants”. 2021. HISTORY.
- “Prehistoric ‘Hell Ant’ Stuck In Amber Has Been Mauling Its Prey For 99 Million Years”. Cassella, Carly. 2021. Sciencealert.
- “Molting | Encyclopedia.Com”. 2021. encyclopedia.com.