▪ Proverbs 6:6-8 says: “Go to the ant, you lazy one; see its ways and become wise. Although it has no commander, officer or ruler, it prepares its food even in the summer; it has gathered its food supplies even in the harvest.”
Several species of ant do, in fact, store food. Likely, the species Solomon referred to—and the most common in Israel today—is the harvester ant (Messor semirufus).
According to one source, “foraging harvester ants leave their nests during favorable weather to search for food . . . [and] collect seeds throughout the warmer months of the year.” They may pick seeds from plants or collect them from the ground. The insects build underground nests close to fields, granaries, or threshing floors, where grain can be found.
Within the nest itself, the ants store food supplies in a series of flat chambers connected by a network of galleries. Their granary chambers may measure up to five inches [12 cm] in diameter and half an inch [1 cm] in height. Well-supplied colonies of harvester ants are thus said to be capable of surviving “for over 4 months with no outside source of food or water.”