Ants

''Many ant species may be present in field crops, feeding on seeds or leaf tissue; other species are predaceous.

A unique association exists between ants and aphids, particularly soybean aphids. Ants are often found on soybean plants in infested fields. Many assume the ants are eating the aphids; instead, the ants are actually tending the aphids, protecting them from predators. The ants feed on the sweet honeydew secreted by aphids.

This information was developed for the publication Identifying Natural Enemies in Field Crops by Mary Gardiner, Christina DiFonzo, Michael Brewer and Takuji Noma, MSU Extension bulletin E2949.

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