Despite the wealth of information produced by the flourishing ethology of ants, little is known about the neural mechanisms that control their behavior. This review summarizes the starting points of an emerging field of ant neuroethology which so far has mainly been concerned with basic sensory and motor information processing. Projects involving behavioral modulation by visual and mechanosensory input as well as reflex pathways, motor control, and the structure and function of ant muscles are illustrated. The distinct structural properties of the ant brain suggest challenging perspectives that address the higher 'cognitive' functions which set the ants apart from socially less highly organized insects.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics