Broad-leaf Resin Trees With Miniature Metropolises

in treetuesday •  last year  (edited)

Sticky Resin Tree with Miniature Metropolises

When we walk in the woods today we find out about another tree in Africa with some high rise homes. Different from previous trees it is not birds, but ants find a home up high.

Broad-leaf resin Tree doesn't grow too tall about 6 to 8 meters, an evergreen tree with a flat crown, with a fascinating bark that appears to attract ants.


Here is the official name of the tree, life gets easier when the parks take the initiative to tell you what you are looking at, research is easier to find out more when interested what the tree offers.

Broad-leaf Resin Tree

The leaves are eaten by browsers (game animals that eat leaves) while the bark is chewed and eaten by elephants and the fruits are eaten by some bird species such as hornbills.
The nectar produced by small spots on the green fruits is utilized by ants. -

I had seen ants in trees like this on a previous visit in the region, found it fascinating to learn ants not only spin leaves but also build nests in trees with mud like substance (in our area).

Broad-leaf Resin Tree iSimangaliso Wetlands Park

Having food on 'tap', right outside your home, what a pleasure. Here the ants are collecting resin from an gnarled bark showing a collection point similar to the tea room in offices, except they are there to work, not chat.

Next are the kidney shaped fruit that forms after the flowers have fallen, ripening into a black colour when fully ripened. Feast for birds and ants when the fruit is ready to eat, (balanced diet for ants having resin and fruit).

Broad-leaf Resin Tree Fruit

Another peek at the fascinating tree house built by ants with silk, silk has never been replicated by humans in strength/strand.

Tree Houses of Tropical Africa and Asia

As we journey farther south, we encounter the weaver ants of Africa and Asia. This society weaves nests out of leaves in trees. The nests are amazingly intricate and can be scattered among several trees.

Bending live leaves into position can require incredible strength. A leaf is too big for one ant to move into place to make an appropriate shelter, so she needs help. The construction begins when one worker grabs onto a leaf with her jaws, and then hundreds of her fellow workers come alongside to grab each other’s bodies and pull together. With their combined strength, the ants pull the edge of the leaf against a nearby leaf. Then they hold the leaf down, while others sew the leaves together.

Sewing the leaves together is a feat all by itself. Workers search for larval ants, grasp them in their jaws, and bring them up to the construction site. The larvae produce silk (also used for cocoons), so certain workers skillfully maneuver these living silk-dispensers back and forth “sewing” the leaves together, while other workers hold the leaves in position until they are held fast by the silk threads into waterproof shelters as large as a man’s head.

Weavers in East Africa will change their homes from one side of a tree to the other, depending on the season, to maximize their exposure to light and regulate temperatures. -

Broad-leaf Resin Ants

Here is where we witnessed this in May this year. Dense woodland area, the tree is on the right hand side of the path as you enter, always be aware you may walk into animals being in a wildlife reserve, never let your guard down, even when you think you are safe.

Broad-leaf Resin Region

Photography has been resized for Steemit (to allow easier transfer on slow internet connection), no software manipulation on my photography, keep it true to what you see.

Thought for Today: A family tie is like a tree, it can bend but it cannot break. ~ African proverb

All photography is my own taken with a Canon Powershot SX730 HS

Tree Tuesday - my contibution to @old-guy-photos

Communities I support: @qurator @steemitbloggers @steemthat @teamsouthafrica @kryptonia

!steemitworldmap -28.1232 lat 32.5564 long Isimangaliso Wetlands Park D3SCR




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Those ants are really impressive. To make such a colony atop a tree like that is certainly not easy. If scaled up to human construction then its a monumental task—just like the pyramids. Though I found there way of using larvae as silk dispenser quite amusing and definitely smart. In a way isn't this how we humans use tools? Great read by the way. #kryptonia


The strength of the nests is impressive, likening the build to pyramids and man is how I felt when first seeing them. Using what you have to build, a great lesson @chrislyr

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silk has never been replicated by humans in strength/strand.

I think this is awesome. You always open nature up to me in an inspirational way. Thank you @joanstewart.


Inspirational indeed, one just needs to look at nature to learn, many hands make light work.

Small communities can defend each other and grow into a strength of it's own.

We are one together as a human race, we need to learn to work together, make a better life for all.

Thank you! It's interesting:)

Absolutely amazing and the ant teamwork can teach us so much as humans! Blessings!


Each having to perform a designated task, right down to the youngest, ants are thriving on our world by just working as one.

Simply amazing that ants can build such a house of leaves!


Moral of the story; small can be big!

Great photos. I just can't stop looking at you and papilloncharity photos. You guys are just so talented with the camera.


Nature gives us topics, camera is to share what we see, capturing a moment in time. @papilloncharity enjoying birds in his region/backyard, if we look, we will find it is all out there.

Equipment is only good once you feel what you see, are able to share in a few words how you feel, thanks for the kind words @giftedwords

Thanks , awesome lol

Such an awesome post thanks for sharing that is really cool that the ants can build such an amazing thing!

awesome you have a tree and free glue. Is it easy to climb, being sticky and all. Love from the Philippines.

This is my first time to see this kind of tree. It is very useful. Thanks to you for introducing this to me.

I love ants, well I find what they do really cool, I hate actually being in contact with them as they seem to bite me a lot, anyway just another example of how cool the hive mind is.

Great photos and cooly taken i think you should go in line of photography as an occupation ....

perfectly captured images and the information of the post is so clear. love to read your posts.

Awesome! Interesting.. I never knew that ants can build nest on trees. 👀 Here in Philippines ants creates maze underground.

Thank you for posting this one. I love it. I upvoted it and resteemed. ^_^

You may like my thought for today, feel free to visit here

Thank you

Best Wishes 💝



Glad you found this as interesting as I did @iamwhatiamnot we have termites hills, mazes undergound, I had never seen there before going into this area.

On this occasion having the name of the tree made it easier to find out more.

I think we have those things in my country.

Awesome post you have

Upvoted and following you


Thank you for visiting @mrposyble enjoying nature to it's full.

Nature truly is amazing. And those ant are incredibly smart. I've known of few species of animals and insects that can use tools like us humans and these ants are one of the best I've seen. Though there choice of tools is very unique (larvae).


I loved how they rely on their strengths within ranks on the issue of building @riovanes relying on each other to finally have a waterproof, resilient home to live in and raise their young.

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que gran contenido amigo no sabia que las hormigas podrian tejer como arañas me gusto muy buen contenido sigue asi suerte kryptonia id andresbernal2402

que gran contenido amigo no sabia que las hormigas podrian tejer como arañas me gusto muy buen contenido sigue asi suerte kryptonia id andresbernal2402

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I always find your post informative, nice pictures also, good quality

Those ant are epic cool—except, I still don't like ants! There bites stings a lot. Why I remember when I was... okay I'll stop with my silly story. Though I don't like ant, I still can't help but admit that they are incredible species despite their small size.


There are more of them than humans, always looking for a place to live. Ants live interesting lives, in many places worldwide.

Wow I wish we had these kinds of trees in the UK
Kryptonia id socialmediaseo

wow amazing post. I haven't seen this kind of tree before and it was interesting to know about this . Thank you so much for sharing.

I had no idea that ants can build such nests.
At first I thought: poor tree, everyone wants to eat a piece of him, but the ants do not destroy it during the construction process, the leaves stay alive.
I liked that you said: "tree doesn't grow too tall about 6 to 8 meters" Lol! That will be a pretty big tree here ...
Have a nice day and until next time!


We live and learn, David Attenborough said in one of his TV series, spend an hour in your own backyard looking at a square meter of ground you will see amazing things, that has always stuck in my mind.

Really interesting to read of trees like this and the explanation is easy to follow and very informative. Thanks. @bon-nom

Very nice insights.

Looks like they have everything they need on this tree to build a strong community. Didn't know ants have the ability to produce silk for its nest. Here in our country I have seen some ant nest on some mango trees made from dried leaves but did not investigate closer as they give a nasty bite.


I did not offer them my fingers @watersnake101 😊

Nice tree, i believe ant can build there nest on it. No matter how hard wood is you'll still find some insect piercing and penetrating through


Insects find a way to thrive everywhere, that is why we must be more aware about looking after our environment, trees play a huge part in many insects lives.

It's amazing how nature is so majestic

That is really cool and a new one on me ;)


So glad I could share something unique 😊

  ·  last year (edited)

I didn't know how industrious, and innovative, they could be... especially the part when they use larval ants to sew the leaves together - that would be quite a sight! Amazing creatures!! :))


First time I saw this a couple of years ago I research into it also had no clue that ants did this, super cool having a nest up high.


No only industrious but brainy too... 😊