These are harvester ants with powerful jaws. In a strange coincidence, a harvester ant colony has a comparable number of neurons as a human brain (and sometimes they try to convey this message visually =)
There are about 1.6 million ants for every person on earth. The ants you see crawling around are all female.
This gel farm was developed by NASA to survive Space Shuttle launches (sand would shift and crush the ants under many G’s). They wanted to study tunnel formation in microgravity. The gel does not collapse during launch, and it contains all the food and water the ants need. It also has some antibiotics and anti-fungal agents.
The subject of Puzzle 39.