解析库 > Magoosh
The ponerines are the most diverse of all the ant groups and are global in distribution. They cannot really be thought of as sophisticated superorganisms, though, for they tend to live in small colonies of a few tens to a few thousand individuals, with one Australian species living in colonies of just a dozen. Like Stone Age human hunters who specialized in killing woolly mammoths, the ponerines tend to specialize in hunting one or a few kinds of prey. That the great success of the ponerines is achieved despite their primitive social organization presents entomologists with what is known as the ponerine paradox. It lacks a widely accepted solution, but researchers suspect that the ponerines` predilection to seek specialized types of prey limits their colony size (for such specialized hunters cannot gather enough food to develop large and sophisticated colonies). If this is the case, then the very characteristic that helps the ponerines to diversify and survive in a wide variety of environments also prevents them from attaining superorganism status.