Desert ants Cataglyphis fortis have been shown to be able to employ two mechanisms of distance estimation: exploiting both optic flow and proprioceptive information. This study aims at understanding possible interactions between the two possibly redundant mechanisms of distance estimation. We ask whether in Cataglyphis the obviously minor contribution of optic flow would increase or even take over completely if the ants were deprived of reliable proprioceptive information. In various experimental paradigms ants were subjected to passive horizontal displacements during which they perceived optic flow, but were prohibited from active locomotion. The results show that in desert ants active locomotion is essential for providing the ants' odometer and hence its path integrator with the necessary information.