Ant and Related Entomology Terms

(terms restricted to the study of social insects; such as, ants and words that apply generally to entomology)

The fourth division of the leg, between the femur (thigh) and tarsus (foot).
Capable of performing all essential tasks; the founding queens of some species are totipotent or nearly so.
trail pheromone, trail substance
A substance laid down in the form of a trail by one animal and followed by another member of the same species.
The taxonomic category between genus and subfamily; hence, a set of similar genera of common phylogenetic origin.
A tuft of long, often yellow or golden hairs associated with glandular areas on the body surfaces of many myrmecophilous beetles.

The hairs are believed to aid in the dissemination of attractants.

triphasic allometry
Polymorphism in which the allometric regression line (study of the relative growth of a part of an organism in relation to the growth of the whole), when plotted on a double logarithmic scale, breaks at two points and consists of three segments.

In ants, the two terminal segments usually have slight to moderately high slopes and the middle segment has a very high slope.

The short second division of the leg (away from the body), between the coxa, hip joint, and the femur (area in the thigh that articulates with the pelvis above and the knee below).
trophallactic appeasement
The use of liquid food offerings (trophallaxis) to appease other, potentially hostile workers.
1. The mutual exchange of food between insects, especially between adults and larvae in social insects.
2. The exchange of alimentary liquid among colony members and guest organisms, either mutually or unilaterally.

In stomodeal trophallaxis the material originates from the mouth; in proctodeal trophallaxis it originates from the anus.

trophic egg
An egg, usually degenerate in form and inviable (useless as a living creature), which is fed to other members of the colony.
trophic parasitism, trail parasitism
The intrusion of one species into the social system of another (as, for example, by utilization of the trail system) in order to steal food.
The relationship in which ants receive honeydew from aphids and other homopterans, or the caterpillars of certain lycaenid and riodinid butterflies, and in return provide these insects with protection.

The insects supplying the honeydew are referred to as trophobionts.

The origin of different caste traits from differential feeding of the immature stages (as opposed to genetic control of castes and blastogenesis).

Blastogenesis is the origination of different castes, within a species, from the egg by means other than genetic; asexual reproduction.

Covered with tubercles (small thick spines or pimple-like structures).
A reference to a population of social insects in which there are no behavioral colony boundaries.

Here are two additional word units that deal directly with "ants": formic- and myrmeco-.

Index of additional Scientific and Technological Topics.

Bibliography of Entomology or Insect Terms (The Ants).