I once made a mistake of identifying these insects as ants when in fact they are a colony of termites. I came across them this morning while trekking at the Sungai Liang Recreational Forest Park . Thing is, the piece of bark is right in the middle of a tarmac pavement, far away from where a nearest tree stands yet there is this one bark of all the other barks with this many termites feeding off it. Perhaps they were feeding on the tree before a strong gust of wind ripped the bark off sending it flying onto the pavement. Resilient little buggers!
Some termites like these feed on fungi, algae and lichens on tree bark. PHOTO: Canon Powershot G11
It was the last day of 2010 and we decided to spend a relaxing morning with the family at the Sungai Liang Forest Recreation Park. Somewhere on the concrete steps, uncertain of my exact direction, I came across a massive ant termite colony in their thousands busy moving food or materials for their nest. I am thankful to have brought along my Canon 5D Mark II and the 100mm Hybrid IS lens instead of the PowerShot G11 or every single attempt to capture them—in unforgiving light conditions—would have failed miserably. See also readers comments and ‘Likes’ on Facebook.
In order to at least freeze a few of the termites, I shot this hand-held at 1/100 sec, f/2.8, ISO6400 with the EF100mm Hybrid IS given the lack of usable available light.
Curious about my presence, a lone ant on a leaf at the entrance to the Sungai Liang Recreation Park crosses to an adjacent leaf when I await with my macro lens.
Shooting a moving target with such a shallow depth-of-field is always challenging. Compounding this are windy conditions causing the leaf to sway unpredictably.