This young colony of Camponotus has a queen and 17 ant-workers. Wanna see how the 18th ant is born?
At first there was an egg that later turned into a small white larva-caterpillar that ants licked and fed. Then it became a cocoon. And when the time for a new ant to be born came, another experienced worker started to help him.
At first, ant made a couple of holes in the cocoon.
When ants could see the eye of the new ant, the worker made an incision.
The upper part of the cocoon is removed as a cap. All ants help to get the little one out of his shell.
The new born ant can’t move himself yet. His legs and antennae are crumpled.
Ants straiten him up and lick his legs.
The little one stands still for a while, adjusting to the new feelings.
The new born ants can’t stand and walk firmly on their feet. But in a few hours this ant will be able to run.