This is a NetLogo version of Buhl et al.’s (2005) model of self-organised digging activity in ant colonies. It was built for a master’s course on self-organisation and its intended use is still educational. The ants’ behavior can easily be changed by toggling switches on the interface, or, for more advanced students, there is R code included allowing the model to be run and analysed through RNetLogo.
Positive feedback can lead to “trapping” in local optima. Adding a simple negative feedback effect, based on ant behaviour, prevents this trapping
The model explores how two types of information - social (in the form of pheromone trails) and private (in the form of route memories) affect ant colony level foraging in a variable enviroment.
Simulates impacts of ants killing colony mates when in conflict with another nest. The murder rate is adjustable, and the environmental change is variable. The colonies employ social learning so knowledge diffusion proceeds if interactions occur.
Ants in the genus Temnothorax use tandem runs (rather than pheromone trails) to recruit to food sources. This model explores the collective consequences of this linear recruitment (as opposed to highly nonlinear pheromone trails).