Dirt or Bug?

Dear All, while watching a trail of ants walking up the trunk of a tree I noticed a tiny piece of dirt moving among the ants. At first I thought that it was just a stray bit of bark blown in, but a closer look revealed that it was moving purposefully with the ants. It was so tiny that I couldn’t get photos of it with the ants and had to put it on a sheet of white paper to actually see it…

Is this a speck of dirt or a bug?

Is this a speck of dirt or a bug?

Turning the speck of dirt over reveals that it is indeed an insect wearing a cloak of bits of dirt and bark. Here you can see the legs and body segments more clearly…

‘Speck of dirt’ turned over to reveal an insect beneath!

Not sure exactly what this bug is or is doing with the ants, but no doubt it is a ‘myrmecophile’ which means an ‘ant-lover’ that lives with the ants and exploits them…


Truly a wonderful disguise!

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