A Day in the Life of a Leaf Cutter Ant Queen

Humans interested in collecting them to prepare them as a local delicacy are one danger, but dangers like birds and frogs who are interested in their tasty abdomens are also a big danger. It is estimated that only around 2.5% (or 1 in every 50 ant princesses) is able to make it through the longest day safely and to start a new colony.

There needs to be a balance for these ants to be successful in their environment. There can't be too many colonies in one area or else perhaps the plants would have too many leaves cut. But there can't be too few colonies in an area or else the soil and the plants will not have nutrients recycled into the soil so efficiently as when the leaf cutter ants are around. Atta laevigata are a keystone species for this region. This means that without them, the whole ecosystem (all the living and nonliving things here) wouldn't work together as well. 

We might be worried about Atta laevigata populations in this area for many reasons. They are an important part of the culture in this region because of the culinary tradition of preparing and eating the leaf cutter ant queens every year. The main factor causing their populations to go down is loss of habitat, though. We need to find ways to protect the whole ecosystem that is supported by and supports the leaf cutter ants. 

6°56'30.6"N 73°02'04.8"W
Location Data:
POINT (-75.5719249 6.2093115)