Learning about new species is a natural curiosity that we all share. Because of this, there have been numerous establishments that help further our knowledge about the animal kingdom. There are thousands of zoos, aquariums and at-home products that provide us an inside look into this other world. However, there is one product that has been cherished by individuals for more than a quarter century. These little containers allow its owners to see one of the hardest working animal species at work, giving you a front-row view to one astonishing show.
This type of entertainment and education could only be given by nothing else, but the ant farm. Ant farms have been cherished by young and old, due to the fact that you are finally able to watch ants hard at work, without having to worry about them discovering your pantry. But what is the history of the ant farm? How did it become so popular?
Many people will be surprised when they find out just how old the ant farm product actually is. The very first commercially produced an farm was available to the public in 1929. Yet, it wasn’t until Frank Austin patented the ant farm in 1931 that its popularity truly began to grow. Since then, there have been many manufacturers of formicariums (technical term for ‘ant farm’), however, there is only one true company that is dedicated to providing high-quality ant farms for the mass public. For over fifty-year’s Uncle Milton’s Ant Farm has been churning out millions of these educational, and entertaining, formicariums. Within this time span Uncle Milton has sold over 20 million individual ant farms across the world.
The importance of Uncle Milton within the ant farm industry is incredible. If it wasn’t for the Uncle Milton Company, we wouldn’t even have the term “Ant Farm.” As for the type of ant farms this company has developed over the years, the options are seemingly limitless. When ant farms first started to make an appearance in the public market, they were made of sand, dirt or even sawdust. However, throughout the decades, there have been many advancements concerning ant farms, and now you are able to view them unlike you have ever before. Perhaps some of the most interesting ant farms are those that contain gel. Unlike sand or dirt, the gel provides you a unique view of the worker ants going about their business. The view is much more dynamic and clear, which gives you the opportunity to witness ants like never before.
The ant farm business went from a small novelty idea to a educational tool that is used by millions of schools to teach the dynamics of worker ants. Since the ant farm’s introduction to the public in 1929, the ant farm has developed from a simple transparent sheet of glass and some sand, to massive, gel-filled viewing areas. Even though the look of the ant farm has changed and developed throughout the years, the concept has remained the same. And this concept is the desire to gain an understanding of these misunderstood creatures.