Anting or ant bathing is the process whereby birds use ants as a treatment for parasites – by letting them crawl on their bodies or by rubbing their feathers with ants to extract formic acid.
Eurasian jay Garrulus glandarius
Wild Boar Sus scrofa
They like to wallow in the nests of wood ants to get rid of parasites. In winter, they tend to use their nests as bedding sites. Ants are also used as food.
Brown Bear Ursus arctos
Ants are also a part of the bear’s diet – at all stages of development. On average, a bear eats four to five thousand individuals from an ant nest at a time.
European Badger Meles meles
They dig up nests, searching for and eating various inhabitants of the nest.
Eurasian Wryneck Jynx torquilla
During the nesting season, approximately half of the food consumed by them is ant pupae and adult insects.
European Green Woodpecker Picus viridis
Their principal food is ants, which are picked up from the surface of the soil or ant nests. It is estimated that it takes around 1.5 million ants and their pupae to produce one brood.
Insectivores, reptiles and amphibians
Ants are not their main food, however, no member of this group will pass on the opportunity to eat an ant.
Pygmy Shrew Sorex minutus
Common Shrew Sorex araneus
White-breasted Hedgehog Erinaceus concolor
European Mole Talpa europaea
Viviparous Lizard Zootoca vivipara
Common Toad Bufo bufo