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## leaf cutters and most other ants in having nests...

This topic has 3 expert replies and 3 member replies
songqianru Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts
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21 Jul 2014
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#### leaf cutters and most other ants in having nests...

Mon Aug 03, 2015 4:37 pm
Elapsed Time: 00:00
• Lap #[LAPCOUNT] ([LAPTIME])
Unlike the nests of leaf cutters and most other ants, situated underground or in pieces of wood, raider ants make a portable nest by entwining their long legs to form "curtains" of ants that hang from logs or boulders, providing protection for the queen and the colony larvae and pupae.

(A) the nests of leaf cutters and most other ants
(B) the nests of leaf cutters and most other ants, which are
(C) leaf cutters and most other ants, whose nests are
(D) leaf cutters and most other ants in having nests
(E) those of leaf cutters and most other ants with nests

I can correctly choose the answer choice C, but I cannot easily get rid of the choice D. Please someone could explain the answer D (according to the explanation from OG 16, the prepositional phrase in having nests suggests that it is raider ants, not leaf cutters and most other ants, that have nests situated underground or in pieces of wood; however, the rest of the sentence indicates that in fact raider ants’ nests are not situated in such locations.) I get confused, why does in having nests imply raider ants rather than leaf cutters and most other ants?

Best

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GMATGuruNY GMAT Instructor
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Tue Aug 04, 2015 7:28 am
songqianru wrote:
I cannot easily get rid of the choice D. Please someone could explain the answer D (according to the explanation from OG 16, the prepositional phrase in having nests suggests that it is raider ants, not leaf cutters and most other ants, that have nests situated underground or in pieces of wood; however, the rest of the sentence indicates that in fact raider ants’ nests are not situated in such locations.) I get confused, why does in having nests imply raider ants rather than leaf cutters and most other ants?
in + VERBing is an ADVERB.
Generally, in + VERBing serves to modify the VERB IN THE FOLLOWING CLAUSE.
D: In having nests, situated underground or in pieces of wood, raider ants make a portable nest.
Here, in having seems to modify make -- the action performed by raider ants.
Since a VERBing modifier implies CONCURRENT action, the following meaning is conveyed:
When raider ants MAKE A PORTABLE NEST, they are simultaneously HAVING NESTS SITUATED UNDERGROUND OR IN PIECES OF WOOD.
This meaning is nonsensical.
Eliminate D.

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Last edited by GMATGuruNY on Thu Aug 06, 2015 2:03 am; edited 1 time in total

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songqianru Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts
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Wed Aug 05, 2015 2:20 pm
But there is not any comma to separate in having nests from unlike the nests of leaf cutters and most other ants, should in having nests modify the closer preceding noun?

Thank you very much again.

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Thu Aug 06, 2015 2:11 am
songqianru wrote:
But there is not any comma to separate in having nests from unlike the nests of leaf cutters and most other ants, should in having nests modify the closer preceding noun?

Thank you very much again.
Please revisit my post above, in which I have clarified the reasoning.
in + VERBing is an ADVERB.
An adverb cannot serve to modify a noun.
Thus, it is not possible for in having to serve to modify leaf cutters and most other ants (two nouns).
In D, the only eligible referent for in having is make -- the verb in the following clause.

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songqianru Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts
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Thu Aug 06, 2015 3:51 pm
Ya, I got your point. Thank you very much for your explanation

Best, Song

KngDi45 Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts
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Wed Nov 23, 2016 6:27 pm
GMATGuruNY wrote:
songqianru wrote:
But there is not any comma to separate in having nests from unlike the nests of leaf cutters and most other ants, should in having nests modify the closer preceding noun?

Thank you very much again.
Please revisit my post above, in which I have clarified the reasoning.
in + VERBing is an ADVERB.
An adverb cannot serve to modify a noun.
Thus, it is not possible for in having to serve to modify leaf cutters and most other ants (two nouns).
In D, the only eligible referent for in having is make -- the verb in the following clause.
Mr. Hunt--
Sorry to refresh this older topic. I understand that "in helping" would modify the word "make"; however, I'm a little more confused about "In + Verb-ing" serving the function as an adverbial modifier.

I always understood it that if you have a preposition immediately following a noun (as in "in" following "ants" in this circumstance) then that prepositional phrase would serve as a noun modifier for the previous noun.

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Sat Nov 26, 2016 10:57 am
KngDi45 wrote:
I always understood it that if you have a preposition immediately following a noun (as in "in" following "ants" in this circumstance) then that prepositional phrase would serve as a noun modifier for the previous noun.

A prepositional phrase following a noun may or may not serve to modify the immediately preceding noun.

SC15 in the OG12:
Many regard the increase in credit card borrowing as a sign.
Here, in credit card borrowing is an adjective serving to modify the immediately preceding noun (the increase).
What KIND of increase?
An increase IN CREDIT CARD BORROWING.

SC5 in the OG12:
the wave that brought 12 million immigrants onto American shores
Here, onto American shores does not serve to modify the immediately preceding noun (immigrants).
We know from context that this prepositional phrase is an ADVERB serving to modify the preceding verb -- brought -- expressing WHERE 12 million immigrants were BROUGHT.
WHERE were 12 million immigrants brought?
They were brought ONTO AMERICAN SHORES.

To determine the function of a prepositional phrase, we must consider both position AND context.

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