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This is an ant keeping hobbyist's dream! The ant farm in this video is something I have absolutely fantasized about having as a kid! In this vlog, we explore the incredible, mind-blowing Atta sp. exhibit of the Espace pour la vie Montreal Insectarium. The exhibit houses a 7 yr old colony of leafcutter ants living in acrylic containers and a network of branches, flowers, and plants.
What makes the exhibit so amazing is that the setup allows for the display of the leafcutter ant workers' foraging behaviours, where they seek out plat matter, cut up the selected leaves and flowers, and carry these huge plants pieces back to the nest where they proceed to chew them up and cultivate the most impressive fungus gardens, which nourish the entire ant colony. We explore in this video just how spectacular these ants and this setup are! Hope you enjoy an epic ant geeking out session!
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About We believe ants are the most amazing creatures on the planet, and every new discovery about their micro world gives us some profound insights into the world around us and ourselves. Bringing the ant farm and love of ant keeping to a whole new level, we are dedicated to show the world the joys of keeping big and healthy pet ant colonies. Shipping worldwide since 2009, we are innovators of ant keeping products for ant lovers and museums alike.

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Caption: [music]. guys. behold the and keeping ps the resistance. what you're looking at here is the dream . setup and species of nearly every pearl . and hobbyist in the world trust me . we absolutely drool over this and setup . so this week i wanted to take a short . break from our regularly scheduled and . soap opera of our cherished ads in the . philippines and take a trip all the way . to montreal canada so we could . completely nerd out at one of the most . impressive captive and set ups i have . ever seen what you're about to see in . this video is the dream and set up . nearly every single ant nerd on the . planet like myself has dreamed of having . and i can't wait to explain why in. perfect and nerved fashion as we toured . the espace por la vie montreal insect . areum's leaf cutter ant exhibit and talk. about what makes these fungus farming . ants some of the most bio . technologically advanced organisms on. the planet you won't want to miss all . the epic and discovery ahead so keep on . watching until the end ac family get . around to ant watch and completely geek . out with me on this episode of the ants . canada and gem . [music]. please subscribe to my channel welcome . to the ac family tired of nature . channels not showing nature shows just. watch this channel enjoy . i'm currently back in canada for a work . trip and my travels took me to the . gorgeous french-canadian city of . montreal which happens to house one of . my favorite spots in the entire country . the insectarium and during the building . you find a ton of insect exhibits but of . course my favorite was this ac family . welcome to the a des exhibit an . impressive seven year old colony of leaf . cutter ants now if you're new to leaf . cutter ants let me tell you these ants. are some of the most mind-blowing ants. ever last year we cover them in an . episode featuring a desert species of . leaf cutter ants which i highly . recommend you watch after this video but . these girls are atropos species of leaf . cutters from south america these ants . belonging to the genus atta are called . leaf cutter ants because of how they cut . up pieces of leaves and use them to feed . their underground fungus gardens which . they eat that's right these ants farm . microscopic mushrooms for a living now . check out how brilliant this setup is . let's take a tour shall we here is the . main nesting basin inside it are clear . acrylic containers which simulate. underground chambers for the ants and . inside each one of those containers are . the gorgeous fungal gardens yes those . giant honeycomb looking things are the . ants giant fungus balls which they tend. and care for very meticulously you see. these ants must ensure that these fungus . crops remain healthy and continue to . thrive because without them the entire . ant colony would die but more about that . mind-blowing activity later . so each acrylic container has an opening. to which a stick is fixated in order for . the leaf cutter ants to climb so they. can drag their cut-up pieces of leaves . into the chamber's inside each of these . chambers is a plaster floor which helps . keep the inside nice and humid necessary . for the ants and the fungal gardens to . survive in the wild these ants . deep chambers to house their massive. fungus balls but they will also be . opportunistic as seen in this setup and . occupy any readily available space with. ideal conditions. i was once in mexico and watched an . addict colony bringing leaves deep into . a sewer seems these ants are resourceful . and willing to use whatever is available . in order to survive now let's move . backwards and see where the ants are . getting all these pieces of leaves the . food for their fungus traveling up this . trunk base and up this wooden branch and . down this neat entanglement of branches . [music]. we come to the source of their fungus. food at the other end of their set up . the ants reach an assortment of various . leaves and hibiscus flowers leafcutter . ants don't accept all kinds of foliage . but amazingly the ants seem to know . which plant matter would best nourish. their fungus aka their food and it's. those that the ants cut up and bring . home isn't that just amazing a sea . family it seems the ants and their . fungus have a mutual understanding. perhaps psychically bonded well let's . leave that for another video the leaves . and flowers are kept fresh by way of . water picks hidden strategically around . the branch entanglement also available . to the ants are rolled oats which the . ants seem to love or should i say there . fungus seem to love now you may notice . that this setup is glassless so you may . be asking what is keeping the ants from . escaping into the museum well a thick . band of this stuff called flew on . painted across all vertical surfaces of . the basin's are super slippery for the . ants and it keeps them from climbing out . of the set up each basin is also . surrounded by a moat of water for extra . security. any ants traveling across the branches . that might slip and fall also fall into . a basin secure with flew on and . surrounded by a moat . now this leak cutter ant colony is seven . years old and contains one egg-laying . queen living somewhere in one of these . acrylic containers she is large and . apparently is seen sometimes emerging to . switch containers but is always . surrounded by a massive ball of workers . protecting them i love watching the ants . traveling back and forth carrying their . pieces of cut-up leaves flowers and oats . back to the nest. it is just so entrancing and fascinating . watching the ants work tirelessly i . could literally be here for hours how. about you guys let's watch them for a . bit. [music]. [music]. [music]. speaking event watching one of the . coolest parts of this end setup is the . fixation of a webcam right here which . projects the ants working on to a screen . so you could watch the ants around the . clock. not sure if at one point this was . streamed online but it gave me an idea . acey family if i manage to hook up a . 24-hour stream of my aunt's back in . manila. would you tune in to watch which colony . would you like to see a stream of let me. know in the comments section and perhaps . we just might make it happen . now i feel the reason and keeping as a . hobby is so appealing is because of how . much ants are like humans and in my . books these leafcutter ants are some of. the most human-like ants around they're . farmers for goodness sakes and not only . that they've been farming for millions . and millions of years on this planet way . before humans have ever appeared on . earth there are even fossils of . leafcutter ants as far back as 20 . million years ago . and speaking of human like check out . their massive pile of garbage yes that . orange hill is the colony's garbage . alright so here's the portion of the . video where we're about to completely . geek out yes more than we already have . so are you ready to hear what makes . these ants so incredible in the . biological world prepared to be . mind-blowing ac family okay get this . these ants grow their fungus which they . eat right but believe it or not like . humans the ants have to deal with weeds . bad fungus which feed on their good . fungus so the ants have a built-in. weeding system check it out. special patches on their body house . colonies of a specialized bacteria. called actin oh my c's and these . specialized bacteria produce an . antibiotic which kill the fungus weeds . see this photo of a leaf cutter ant . which looks like it's covered in white . hair well these white hairs . are the strands of antibiotic which help . kill the weed fungus which kill their . food fungus but that's not all the . mind-blowing part is that the leaf. cutter ants their food fungus the weed . fungus and the specialized bacteria are . all only found within these leafcutter . ant nests nowhere else in the world . isn't that just crazy these four . organisms are so interdependent on each. other that they cannot exist without . each other and do so only in these . leafcutter ant nests scientists are even . trying to study the antibiotics the act . in oh my c's produce in hopes to produce . antibiotic alternatives for humans aside. from that these ants are important . herbivores in the ecosystems where they . are from so conservation of their. habitat is super important which brings . me to why i don't own a colony of these . leafcutter ants and a dream set up like . this i live in the philippines where . leafcutter ants like these don't exist . and if you've been following this . channel for a while you might recall a . previous video where we outline the . dangers of keeping ants that are not . from your area . we have always promoted the notion of . responsible and keeping among private. and keepers and hobbyists meaning the . keeping of ants caught from one's area . but we do have one exception to the rule . and that is in cases like this where the . imported creatures are housed under very. controlled environments for the purpose . of public education and/or study meet . dominic the resident worm ecologist of . the insectarium and the one who has . cared for this colony since they first . received it seven years ago he just so . happened to be refilling one of the food. stations with oats when he spotted me . filming and told me he was also an ac . family member how neat dominic said the . canadian government granted them a very . special permit for them to display these . animals and have them in the museum and . also mentioned that they are under . constant surveillance having to abide by . super strict terms regarding maintaining . the exhibit and keeping it secure so to . not allow the ants to escape even if . these tropical ants may . radically failed to survive a canadian . winter there are still other ways in . which escaped ants can negatively impact . the environment here in canada including . spreading disease or other pathogens to . local flora and fauna also there are . other variables that one might consider . including the survival of the ants in . indoor environments during the winter . however it's totally awesome that one . can visit amazing places like the . montreal insectarium here to get up . close and personal and get a glimpse at . the lives of these amazing leafcutter . ants which in turn will go on to inspire. others to admire their beauty perhaps . inspire them to seek further research . about them it's also one of the reasons . why this channel exists the more people . know about how awesome ants are the more . people respect them and want to conserve. them and their habitat and that is . definitely a good thing even for our own . good thank you guys for contributing to . this growing and consciousness by . watching this video i truly appreciate . it. don't forget guys to give this video a . thumbs up hit the like button and . subscribe if you enjoyed this video and . hey even though i can't have this setup . at home it doesn't mean i can't do . something similar with ants from where i . live what do you guys say we try to . create a similar setup at home in the . ant room which ant colony though would . do best in a setup like this perhaps a . whole new ant species like asian weaver . ants cowboy this may be a very big . undertaking . i'll also marinate on some ideas and . take in some of your feedback ac family . until next week this is your ant nerd . ants canada signing out . it's ant love forever . [music]. how right ac family aren't leafcutter . ants pretty cool i'd say so . ac inner colony i have left a hidden . cookie for you here if you would just. like to watch some extended play footage . of these ants doing their thing in this . impressive exhibit i've also left a link . in the description box to the . insectarium website if you would like . more information on the exhibit or on . what other cool things you can find in . the montreal insectarium and now it's . time for the ac question of the week. last week we asked name one reason why . we felt the terrarium in the video was . haunted congratulations to kylo ren who . correctly answered every time we tried . to move an ant colony into the terrarium . they either died or caused a problem . congratulations kylo ren you just won a . free ebook handbook from our shop in . this week's ac question of the week we . asked how do live ant exhibits like this . help ants humans and the environment . leave your answer in the comment section . and you could win a free and t-shirt for . marshall hope you can subscribe to the . channel as we upload every saturday at 8 . a. m. eastern standard time please . remember to like comment share and. subscribe if you enjoyed this video to . help us keep making more its envelope . forever . [music]. .

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