Termites

Termite Mound

Termite Mound

Termites (also called “white ants”) build themselves incredible “apartment buildings” out of a concrete-like substance made of termite excrement and saliva. They can be as high as twenty-five feet, which is pretty big, compared to the size of a termite. Austin tried to imagine what it would be like if we made our houses that way. Boys!

These are huge, impressive structures, which you’ll certainly see if you spend any time in the Northern Territory. During World War II, the “ant hills” were ground up and used to make airplane runways.

Anthill

"Ant hills" aligned with the sun

This shot gives you an idea of the accuracy with which termites align their structures with the broad side facing east-to-west, so the hot midday sun falls only on the narrow edge, keeping the interior cooler. How can such tiny creatures be so clever?! In some places, the termite mounds seem to stretch on forever, and give the vague impression of a giant cemetery.



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