Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Magnetic Termite Mounds

These are Magnetic Termite Mounds.  The remarkable thing about these mounds is that they line up (more or less) with magnetic north.  The thin axis of the mound points North/ South, which means the flat sides face east and west.

It is thought that this helps with the temperature regulation of the mounds - in the hottest part of the day, when the sun is to the North or South of the mounds, only a thin section is presented to the sun.  In the cooler parts of the day - dawn and dusk - the mounds collect sunlight on a wide face.  Simple, but elegant.

These mounds are at a well know location in the Litchfield National Park in the Northern Territory.





You can find more shots from around the world at Our World Tuesday.

14 comments:

Lady Fi said...

How very cool!

Rhodesia said...

Saw these on Planet Earth last night, they are very different to the ant hills I know in Southern Africa. Great photos. Cheers Diane

Author R. Mac Wheeler said...

very cool

TheChieftess said...

How interesting! We saw termite mounds in South Africa, but nothing like this! In SA they were mounds of red dirt...looked like someone took a shovel and just piled the dirt as high as it would go!

Missy George said...

Never heard of that! Very interesting and educational post.. cool pictures... I learned something today. Thanks

Breathtaking said...

Hello Stewart!:) How fascinating! One of natures marvels for sure.

Linda W. said...

Wow -that's so cool! Thanks for the photos and info.

Fun60 said...

Your timing is perfect as they were shown as David Attenborough's latest series Planet Earth.

Marcia said...

They are really mounds? Look like headstones to me.

A Quiet Corner said...

OMG! They look like gravestones, don't they, Stewart? How very cool...:)JP

Lea said...

Very interesting!
Hope you have a great week!

Pat Tillett said...

That is AMAZING!
I knew nothing of this. Thanks for the info and photos.

Vineeta Yashswi said...

This is really amazing... I first time seeing these much Termite mounds togeather...

NatureFootstep said...

We did see several kinds of termite mounds when I was in Queensland. But I don´t recall this one. Looks like a graveyard. :)