BBC Home
Explore the BBC



Last Updated: Friday September 03 2010 14:19 GMT

Are elephants scared of ants?

African Elephant and a Ghost Ant

When an elephant decides it's hungry there's not much you can do to stop them eating - unless you're an ant.

Scientists have found African elephants will not eat from trees with ants in them.

They think the elephants don't like the ants as they crawl up their trunks while they're tucking into the bark.

One of the scientists who took part in the research said elephants would avoid trees with ants in, "like a kid avoids broccoli."

Professor Todd Palmer, from the University of Florida said: "It seems that elephants simply do not like ants swarming up the insides of their trunks, and I can't say I blame them."


An elephant


How much do you know about the mighty beasts?