Brood movement in response to temperature by Pogonomyrmex salinus (seed-harvester ant) nurse workers was examined in the sagebrush steppe of southeast Idaho. Shading the mound surface of P. salinus colonies at dawn caused a decrease in mound temperature and led to significantly less brood accumulation near the surface. In a related experiment, a lab colony of P. salinus was offered an artificial thermal gradient during the cool/dark portion of the daily cycle. Nurse workers removed brood from the 21–22 °C range to soils with temperatures between 29 °C and 36 °C. Daily brood relocation by P. salinus nurse workers is a highly flexible behavior, capable of immediate response to temperature, and does not appear to follow a strict endogenous rhythm.
Anderson, Kirk E. and Munger, James C.
"Effect of temperature on brood relocation in Pogonomyrmex salinus (Hymenopteria: Formicidae),"
Western North American Naturalist: Vol. 63
, Article 17.
Available at: http://scholarsarchive.byu.edu/wnan/vol63/iss1/17