Do ants use camouflage?



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    Worker ants in the tribes Basicerotini and Stegomyrmecini (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) build up a sort of camouflage over time as a thin layer of dirt builds up over their exoskeleton.  It doesn’t seem that the ants do anything actively to cause this effect (such as secrete something to cause dirt to stick to them); it just occurs as a result of their normal activities.

    It looks like the Ectatomma ruidum, a common neotropical ant, uses a form of chemical camouflage so that ants can blend in with other colonies and steal their food.

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