First off- calm down. Yes, anteaters are wily, and yes, they do eat ants, but there are ants that have met anteaters and lived to tell the tale. Several of us wrote this survival guide. If you can manage to keep your cool, you may join our hallowed ranks. Armed with the information contained in this handy-dandy survival guide, you’ll easily outwit any anteater, armadillo, or pangolin who’s foolish enough to lay seige to your home.
Let’s face it- anteaters are just jerks, and there’s nothing we can do about it. But why is it that they are so hell-bent on making the lives of every ant within ten square miles of their home miserable? Why won’t anteaters just become planteaters and leave everybody be? The answer, as it turns out, is that they can’t. Anteaters jawbones have fused together over time, meaning that apart from sucking up ants (and termites), there’s not much that they can do.
Ant researchers speculate that this is why anteaters hold such a grudge against ants, who’s tiny but powerful mandibles must really make anteaters jealous.
The Tongue Of An Anteater Is A Formidable Foe. How Can It Be Beaten?
Quite simply, it can’t. As if the fact that it were covered in tiny, backwards facing ant-grabbing spines weren’t enough, the tongues of anteaters are also covered in an extraordinarily sticky saliva- good for them, bad for us. Add this onto the fact that an anteater’s tongue is nearly two feet long, and all of a sudden you’ve got a recipe for an antastrophe. Again, calm down. This tongue cannot see you. When an anteater feeds, it will mindlessly slip it’s tongue through the widest and most accessible tunnels of your colony, so stay off the beaten path. By hiding in antechambers or arterial tunnels which don’t get much use, you’ll avoid becoming lunchified. Also, an anteater’s tongue is quite long, but it’s not nearly as long as the ground is deep. If you hear an anteater coming (see below), head for low ground. Sure, they can use their powerful claws and forelimbs to dig for you, but you can buy yourself some valuable time by going as deep as possible as soon as possible. ADAPASAP, we like to say.
What Was That You Said A Second Ago, About Hearing An Anteater Coming?
A stitch in time saves nine, and an ant who knows when an anteater is on it’s way saves nine ants. If you live in anteater territory, be aware. Do you hear a slow, plodding sound, accompanied by a faint rustle? If the answer is ‘yes,’ then you’re listening to an anteater slowly approaching your colony, dragging it’s bushy tail of coarse hair behind it. It’s a distinct sound, much different from the sound of an approaching whip scorpion or centipede, so make note of it.
Note, however, that if you live in tamandua territory, this aural profile does not apply. Tamanduas are sneaky and arboreal. Ant researchers are currently working on a detection system for these pesky predators, but advise tamandua-threatened ants to live by the ADAPASAP philosophy in the meantime.
OK, I Think I Get It- But What About A Pre-emptive Strike Against The Xenarthrans?
That’s stupid. Even a large colony of fire ants could not defeat a small anteater. They are gigantic, and so stupid that they are impervious to pain. C’mon.
Well, What Else Is There To Do?
Educate your fellow ants. Acting on the advice we’ve given here, any ant can save himself. However, by telling his fellow ants everything he’s learned here today, an ant may be able to save his whole colony. Knowledge is power- power against anteaters. Having made it this far, you have become more powerful- against anteaters. Do the right thing and share that power with those you care about. Help build smarter colonies- have fake tunnels, deep antechambers in which to hide, and line your walls with bitter leaves that anteaters will find repulsive. If any one of us can survive an anteater attack, then all of us should be able to.
This informational pamphlet was published by the Anteater Attack Veteran’s Council (AAVC), a non-profit organization dedicated to the prevention of the needless eating of ants. The AAVC is supported by donations from readers like you. To make a donation, visit our website.
Alex Berg graciously provided Mirth in a Blog with this informative post. Mirth in a Blog is a humor blog loosely associated with the best place on the internet to get fun gifts and care packages-MirthinaBox.com. Check us out!