Ants, Wasps, Lizards and teeth

July 15th

Well, today has been rather interesting. Though I would get some macro sequences today, getting up close and personal with the insect world. Ants were up first, so I filmed some of the larger ones running up and the algorobo tree, or fairy tree as I like to call it, busy preparing for a days foraging of literally anything that is edible. I’ve seen these remarkable insects take lizards, birds, crickets, beetles, other ant species, to a more vegetarian diet of flowers, leaves and most popular of all, seeds. Perhaps it’s the rich lipid and protein content that they favour. If they’re lucky enough to get access to my fruit they will do, my suitcase was full of them eating my plumb. Really fascinating creatures, the way they manoeuvre themselves across the branches and trees in such a coordinated manner, without disrupting the flow of traffic- wish drivers in Spain would get the hint! The drivers’ brains during the summer here are seriously frazzled, and are a real danger to people. Equally interesting was the wasps nest I found, which resides on a lavender plant rather surprisingly. I’m yet to see if they still reside within it, but judging by the two wasps I spotted nearby, I’m guessing so. The lizards were also active, and their iridescent blue tails, flicking as they dart away from any incoming sound. It’s quite tricky to get any footage of them at all! Would be good if I could get some asking footage of them though, when they are still a little weary from their daily torpor- animals that lower their metabolism and heart, ventilation and breathing rate during the day for short periods of time. This evolutionary adaption is common in animals living in hot, arid climates which try to avoid overheating and reduce energy expenditure whilst keeping cool. They are then able to maintain their body temperature within the thermal neutral zone- a range of environmental temperatures at which an animal can perform metabolic processes efficiently. Hence why the Spanish have a “siesta” every day! Also got my tooth filling today, first time I’ve been to the dentist for any filling at all, so wasn’t actually nervous! Now I can chomp away at my watermelon, mmmmmm….

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