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My question is:

  • Can a human be used as a living ant hill or bee hive, e.g. have insects living inside themselves under the premise that they (the human) are completely immobilized? "Living hill or bee hive" means that the insects burrow tunnels construct structures within the human.
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  • $\begingroup$ Related to your previous question, there are also ants growing plants in their ant hill... $\endgroup$ – L.Dutch - Reinstate Monica Jun 22 '17 at 9:02
  • $\begingroup$ @L.Dutch They drag rotten materials into the hive to cultivate a fungus. Other ants keep aphids to drink the sweet secretions they produce $\endgroup$ – RenegadePizzaGuy Jun 22 '17 at 9:32
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    $\begingroup$ I hope a disgusting question can handle a somewhat disgusting link en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maggot_therapy But apparently this is a great thing $\endgroup$ – Raditz_35 Jun 22 '17 at 10:35
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    $\begingroup$ @Raditz_35 I'm horrified and fascinated at the same time $\endgroup$ – Sec SE - clear Monica's name Jun 22 '17 at 17:05
  • $\begingroup$ @Raditz_35 yea, that's why some of us have maggots in the bathroom cupboard with the bandages and aspirin. $\endgroup$ – JDługosz Jun 23 '17 at 4:49
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In short: no.

Insect hives and/or colonies are architectural miracles of nature. These hives are built with an understanding of architectural principles that humans developed over centuries. E.g. Ant hives use hexagonal coves, as they provide the same surface area that a square would, are inter lockable and require less material. Humans are basically skin sacks packed with meat. Our organs are packed in tightly and are arranged in a way that makes sense for us.

Another big thing to consider is material. Wax and dirt can be manipulated. I doubt sticking one piece of meat to another will form a durable structure. There are termites that actively seal off and open entrances when the colony is attacked. This kind of manipulation simply isn't possible.

To conclude: It is extremely unlikely that something as advanced as a hive will be constructed into something living, when there are far better options.

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  • $\begingroup$ Perhaps not likely, but perhaps if there were some sort of mutual benefit for the existence of the ants or bees, you could conceivably have a large organ for the sole purpose of housing the bees or ants. It would have to be heavily protected from the rest of the body as otherwise disease would run rampant. $\endgroup$ – Neil Jun 22 '17 at 13:54
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There are wasps which implant their eggs into living animals (mostly other insects) so that the growing worm can feed on fresh flesh. This of course results in the death of the host.

So I would say that in principle it is possible.

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    $\begingroup$ I don't think this is the same. Its the same principle as a dung beetle hatching its young in a ball of feces, just slightly more horrifying. Fun fact, there are wasps that lay their eggs in pomegranate fruit, but in turn also spread pollen like bees do. However, if the wasp isn't carrying pollen and lays its eggs, the tree will literally drop the fruit. Nobody screws over a pomegranate tree $\endgroup$ – RenegadePizzaGuy Jun 22 '17 at 9:37
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Apparently it is allegedly possible for a mobile and active human to have a slight case of termite infestation, though I don't know how possible it may be for the termites to build a hive or nest in such an alien environment.

http://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/article-abstract/6673951

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  • $\begingroup$ Ew ew ew ew $\endgroup$ – Draco18s Jun 23 '17 at 15:42
  • $\begingroup$ Draco18s - I agree. Ew ew ew ew! $\endgroup$ – M. A. Golding Jun 23 '17 at 16:39

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