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A novel routing scheme named by ant-CEDAR for mobile ad hoc networks (MANETs), which enhances core-extraction distributed ad hoc routing algorithm (CEDAR) using ant-like mobile agents is proposed in this paper. The proposed protocol reduces route discovery latency and package delay by using only a subset of nodes in the network for route management and avoiding the use of broadcast relays. Ant-CEDAR uses ants to establish and maintain core, and discover destination nodes. It tries to utilize the advantages of both ant algorithms and CEDAR. The results of simulation experiments imply ant-CEDAR gains more efficiency and lower cost.