External ant anatomy


Head – houses the compound eyes, antenna and muscles that power the mandibles.

Compound eyes – ants have poor eyesight, they have many small eyes placed next to each other. This enables them to see close movement.

Antenna – used to smell, touch, feel and communicate with other ants. Attached to the front of the head, they can move in-front and behind the ant.

Mandibles – used for cutting, holding, fighting, and digging. There are smaller mouthparts for chewing food.

Thorax – all the legs and wings are attached to the thorax.

Legs – are strong and flexible, they have claws on the end of each leg for grasping. Front legs used to touch objects and cleaning its body.

Claws – used to grip onto different surfaces, when on glass, the claws withdraw and a moist pad allows for adhesion.

Gastor – is part of the abdomen. It contains vital organs, it is has a telescoping construction of seven segments that gives this large area flexibility.

Stinger – is used to inject formic acid into victims. Not all species have a stinger, but they can still spray acid into wounds.