#trending: Viral video shows ants working together to move necklace in 'gold heist'
KOCHI, INDIA — A viral video reposted on Twitter on Tuesday (June 28) shows a small army of ants working together to transport a gold chain. Online users have dubbed it a "gold heist" and expressed amusement and amazement at the tiny "smugglers", viewing the video more than 156,000 times.
The ants previously drew the attention of Twitter users in March last year, when Indian Police Service officer Dipanshu Kabra first shared the video on his Twitter account. His video, captioned "Smallest Gold Smugglers", gathered more than 12,500 views.
Video licensing company ViralHog said that the incident occurred on Jan 16, 2021 in Ernakulam, the central district of Kochi in Kerala state in south-west India.
ViralHog wrote: "Mum's jewellery was missing, searched the whole house for it, finally found it being smuggled by ants."
On Tuesday, Indian Forest Service officer Susanta Nanda reposted the video footage on his Twitter account, cheekily asking his followers: "Under which section of the Indian Penal Code can they be booked?"
One joked back: "There now has to be APC," referring to a fictional "Animal Penal Code".
Another observed: "First we need to find the mastermind of the crime."
Many praised the little workers for their determination, declaring: "Nothing is impossible ... team spirit and teamwork will help us achieve anything".
For those with a more investigative mind, some suggested the reason that the ants were interested in the chain was that sugar or honey might have been on the piece of jewellery.
Others were quick to jump in with pop culture and film references — in particular to the well-known Indian period action film series KGF, which follows an ambitious young man who gets caught up with a notorious gold mafia.
Fans dubbed the ants "Rocky's army", referring to the main character of the series, and even said that they would feature in future instalments of the show.
Some, on the other hand, could not resist the opportunity to allude to Marvel Studios' character Ant-Man, a reformed thief who is able to control ants remotely with his mind.
In a similar incident, another ViralHog video shared on YouTube in August 2018 — viewed more than 1.79 million times — caught "an ant casually rolling a diamond away in the office of a diamond wholesaler" at New York City in the United States.
The video shows only one ant on the job this time, though some viewers guessed that its "crew (was) just around the corner waiting in mini-Minis".
"Imagine explaining to your boss that an ant stole a diamond," a top comment read.
One reply presented a new solution to an age-old problem: "The ant stole my homework?"
Others stepped up to defend the tiny "criminal": "Ant-Man needs that diamond to defeat Thanos."
YouTube users were also tickled by the ant's shifty behaviour.
One comment observed: "I like how he keeps checking behind himself like he knows he's being watched."
It appears that ants are not the only creatures with an interest in gold.
Earlier this month, Indian news agency Asian News International reported that a bag of gold jewellery worth Rs 5 lakhs (more than S$8,800) had been "recovered from (the) clutches of rats in a gutter" in Mumbai.
The bag of gold had been mistakenly thrown into a garbage dump, and surveillance footage captured rats later transporting it to a gutter.
In the words of one YouTube user, the question is: "So... how does one train ants to do this? Asking for a friend..."