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Ants of the genus Camponotus are known as carpenter ants because they house their colonies in galleries they excavate in wood. Carpenter ants do not eat the wood they remove during their nest-building activities, but deposit it outside entrances to the colony in small piles. The wood is used solely as a nesting site.
The galleries of carpenter ants are kept smooth and clean, and are not lined with moist soil as termite galleries are.
Leafcutter ants cut leaves from plants and trees and grow fungus on these cut fragments. The ants use this fungus to feed their larvae. They have one of the most sophisticated animal societies in the world. This is because of their unusual method of farming (they are the only animal besides humans who grow their own food from living matter).
The fire ant mound development and size is influenced by soil type and colony size. Generally 30cm or more in diameter and height with a dome shape.
The underground nest is a series of interlocking galleries, tunnels and chambers that may go over a metre in the ground. Tunnels just below the soil surface extend several metres out from the mound, with regular exits where ants come out to search for food.
The Crazy Ant is also known as Paratrechina longicornis, which are part of the family Formicidae (Ants). These ants are known as Crazy Ants because of their characteristic rapid and erratic movement. The worker ants have extremely long legs, making them relatively easy to identify.
These ants feed on a variety of foods including grease, sweets, and other insects. In some areas they are considered a biological control agent for houseflies. While crazy ants need moisture, elimination of water by itself will not get rid of these ants since they can survive under a wide range of conditions. Elimination of food sources and nest sites are equally important in the management of this ant.
Sugar ants are one of the most persistent and difficult ants to control. They consist of very large colonies with up to several million workers and thousands of queens. They rely on artificial heating in buildings to survive and infestations commonly occur in food service areas. Sugar ant colonies will also nest in any well-protected and hidden areas throughout a structure, as well as outdoors in lawns or gardens.
The ants will grow from eggs to adults in about 45 days. Females live as long as 39 weeks and can lay about 400 eggs. Workers will only live up to 10 weeks.
Rasberry Crazy Ants – Tawny Ants
Rasberry crazy ants, or now they are being called Tawny crazy ants, have been found in enormous numbers. They are social insects that live in large colonies or groups of colonies that seem to be indistinguishable from one another.
Rasberry crazy ant colonies can be found under or within almost any object or void, including stumps, soil, concrete, rocks, potted plants, etc.
Velvet ants are actually wingless wasps of the family Mutillidae. Their compactness of appearance is the result of fusion of body regions and strong development of the exoskeleton. Each insect is in effect surrounded by armor plate which prevents water loss and affords protection from predators as well; mouth parts of most insects are simply not massive enough to penetrate the body wall of a velvet ant. As an even more formidable defense mechanism the insect possesses a sting which, because of its length and maneuverability, may be directed at a considerable angle from the abdomen. Although its major function may not be a defensive one, an acknowledgment of the sting’s effectiveness as a weapon is apparent in another common name for the velvet ants: The “cow killers.” The bright color pattern on the body wall may well serve as advertisement to potential predators that an unpleasant experience is in store if a velvet ant is dealt with carelessly.
The ghost ant gets it name from size and color of its abdomen and legs. The body is a pale or clear color and the head is typically dark brown. These ants eat the honeydew that they collect from plant feeding insects like aphids. When indoors ghost ants typically feed on sweet foods. They will nest in potted plants, under rocks, or in brush and will find their way inside by any type of crack or crevice around the house.