Ant Capades

Teeny, tiny, happy ants. “I am in pollen heaven, round and round we go!” Dahlia.

Now this is quite a predicament! “Lucky the leaf came by.” Monarda.

But this is much worse. “Help me!!!! I was plucked right up in the leaf litter.” Concolor. (You will see more from this shoot. Robins are building in my Concolor right outside my office.)

“Where the heck is that colony when you need them. Sending out pheromones. Anybody out there? Can you hear me now?”

“Should I take the dive? I am not a strong swimmer. I hear we can hold our breath for a long time, but I am not interested in finding out if that is true ”

“Looks a little shallower over here, but still not willing to risk it. Let’s look from another vantage point.”

“I see land.”

“Ahoy, water bug , can you lend a hand?”

“So close, yet so far.”

“Oh, the futility of it all.”

I’m doomed.

“How the heck did I get in this mess?”

Teeny tiny, happy ant.” Peony.

“Oh yes, getting high on peony nectar, life is good, but it has its pitfalls.”

“And this is how I fell, drunken, into the bird bath, funneled right in, but boy was that peony nectar good stuff.”

Oh, I’m feeling blue.

I wrote a more informative post on ants previously and thought you may not have seen it since it was very long ago. It is a very popular post on searches and I decided to leave the link in this post. Carpenter Ants.

About Garden Walk Garden Talk

I love to photograph, paint, draw, design, garden, travel the world, and pass on a few tips and ideas that I learned through experience as a Master Gardener and architect. I am highly trained in my field and enjoy my work each and every day. I garden in Niagara Falls, NY in zone 6-B. Find me at:
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55 Responses to Ant Capades

  1. andrea says:

    Donna, I have been smiling all the time with this fun post and lovely photos! I have taken lots of photos with different kinds of ants, unfortunately my lens is not doing them any good, not as close as yours. I love it when some ants join together to pull a potential food like a wriggling caterpillar! Have you seen that yet, ow it is wonderful to observe and put dialogues.

  2. Terrific shots – no ants on my peonies yet. But I don’t expect that I will have blooms this year as they were all just transplanted.

  3. Fun post Donna…the ants have been having a ball in my garden…they have built a nest in one of the veg gardens but they are not a problem…great shots!

  4. helensadornmentsblog says:

    How did you get so close? Especially the shot with the bird… Really enjoyed this post.

    • Helen, the ants are about 3/8 inch long and I used both a macro lens, 60mm (I can get to 6 inches away), and a medium telephoto, 18mm-135mm. Handholding the macro lens is hard to do because any movement blurs the image that close up, since it is a 1:1. The zoom is a much easier lens to handhold, but I get a lot of grain with this lens, mostly because I have to zoom it all the way. The robin was taken with a 300mm lens. It was funny because the robin had a much bigger wad of leaf mold in its beak and half dropped out to reveal the ant. I do not know what kind of ant it was, but it did wiggle away.

  5. Tee hee. This was a fun visit! I often do this in my imagination, but your narration/dialogue is priceless. Thanks for the giggles!

  6. Jess says:

    Such a cool post 🙂

  7. Lyn says:

    Lots of fun and some great macro shots.

  8. A fun post to start my morning! Great shots of these teeny, tiny insects….no small feat! I have heard that ants help the peony buds open. Any truth to that or are they just attracted to the nectar?

    • I have read the ants do nothing to make the buds open, but it seems to me there has to be some reciprocal benefit for both. I think the ants might keep other detrimental insects (chewing kind) away, but that is a guess. The peonies attract wasps too and I see both ants and wasps feeding on the same bud. I think they do get placid from the nectar, because I have almost touched them with no mean wasp coming after me. Again, a guess, but I think the nectar makes them happy.

  9. Excellent – and such good shots.

  10. It looks like you had a lot of fun taking the photos of the ants and writing the captions.

  11. Sheds Garden says:

    Cool post! I really had fun. Those ants have been so busy.

  12. Denise says:

    What a coincidence, I was trying to photograph ants in the garden today. But I didn’t succeed. Those ants are so very quick, they just keep going. Your photographs are so beautiful. What is your secret?

    • I use a faster shutter speed to stop them in the frame. You are right they are fast, especially the ones that fell in the birdbath. Those on the peonies just happily feed and don’t even move if I get in close.

  13. You really had me laughing with the lone ant trapped on the leaf. His antennae are so expressive of (what we think are) his thoughts.

    • You have to wonder what they are thinking when stuck in these situations. He was actually lucky I was in the garden or he might not lived to drink peony nectar again. There was two ant actors. I rescued the other one too.

  14. photographybyjoylene says:

    Awesome photos and I love your captions 🙂

  15. gardeningasylum says:

    Gorgeous photos and I love the ant drama – esp when high on peony nectar 🙂

  16. b-a-g says:

    So funny, especially the “I see land” photo.

  17. deborahelliott says:

    Beautiful shots and fun captions! I am always fascinated by the macro world!

  18. Indie says:

    Very cute, especially the little ant trapped on the leaf – it looked like it was pulling on its antennae in frustration! I love the shot of the robin as well!

  19. Incredible photography!!! Loved the captions. 🙂

  20. Stacy says:

    The doomed one shouldn’t have made me laugh, but it did. Glad you rescued it and gave it a new lease on life. An ant colony has moved into one of my big urns–not sure what they’ll make of things when I have to move the urn to get different light as the summer progresses… Fun post, Donna!

  21. GirlSprout says:

    Your post made me chuckle after having a not so great day. Thanks for the good cheer!

  22. Jennifer says:

    Donna, What a fun post! Poor little ant adrift on that leaf! Great shots, as always.

  23. cathywieder says:

    Amazing photographs! ANd the captions are a hoot….. 😉

  24. Masha says:

    Thank you for making me smile! That is quite a shot of the robin, I wonder how much time you spent waiting for it :). I am glad you paid attention to the little ants, they made a great story!

    • Actually, the robin was back and forth all day making her nest. I only waited about one minute, but when she saw me, she left until I went back in. Most of my shots, except this one, was from inside my office. If I was not outside, I would not have seen her with the ant. It was just kinda lucky.

  25. Marguerite says:

    oh yes, soon we’ll have ants all over when the peonies sprout. So funny how they just can’t get enough of those buds.

  26. This was so cute, Donna. They do get themselves in interesting predicaments, don’t they?

  27. thequeenofseaford says:

    Really cute posting. In the photo where the ant has walked through the pollen made me think, we don’t often think of ants as pollinators.

  28. Mac_fromAustralia says:

    Great close-ups and great post.

  29. Donna, before I bring Peony blooms into the house I have to gently hit the blooms against a sidewalk to dislodge the “nectar drunkards.”

    Here are 2 of my blog photos showing how carpenter ants COMPLETELY hollowed out our large maple tree:

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