June 18 2005 Aphaenogaster tennesseensis collecting mushrooms at Great Falls, MD.
Mushroom on dead oak tree, near ground.
Mushroom on same tree, two feet above ground.
Same mushroom, view from below.
Lower mushroom from above.
Upper mushroom with two A. tennesseensis. Lower ant is cutting the mushroom.
Views of the ant cutting a mushroom piece free.
An A. tennesseensis on the same mushroom working on pulling a piece below.
The ant on the left is the one that was cutting the mushroom.
After the ant freed the piece of mushroom, a second ant came and took it from the first.
The second ant quickly leaves with the mushroom piece.
The second ant travels laterally across the trunk of the dead tree with the mushroom piece.
The ant enters the bark of the tree, and likely its nest site. These ants only nest in dead trees with bark remaining relatively intact.
A not so beautiful but functional movie of the ant cutting the mushroom.