Road rage keeps ants moving smoothly

8:37pm, March 16, 2004

Traffic scientists, specialists in nonlinear systems, and animal behaviorists have cooperated in a study of one of the natural geniuses of transportation engineering: the black garden ant of Europe.

Ants don't have police officers or traffic lights, but crowded streams of workers readily redirect themselves into new traffic patterns that ease congestion, according to Audrey Dussutour of Paul Sabatier University in Toulouse, France. "They regulate traffic before it becomes blocked," she says.

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