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Acrobat Ants

Active Seasons

Appearance and Size Facts

  • Very shiny bodies that are variable in color from light red to brown or black
  • Heart-shaped abdomen that often bends up over their thorax when agitated or excited
  • Have a stinger, but are not of human health concern, as they rarely sting or attempt to sting
  • Size: Ranges from 1/8 inch to more than 1/4 inch in length
  • Commonly nest in trees and rotting wood

Behavior and Habitat

Acrobat ants eat a wide variety of foods, including sweets and proteins, though they prefer honeydew from sap-sucking insects. They will trail along tree limbs, utility lines, and fences; and enter structures through cracks and holes around utility lines or pipes. They also emit a strong odor when disturbed. Acrobat ants are the most dominant arboreal ant species in the forests of Northern Florida, and usually build their nests in the trees. They are extremely territorial, and only one colony will exist in a tree. They do not nest in sound wood, but are found in damp or rotting wood using cavities excavated by other insects. If damp or rotting wood is present these ants can infest buildings.

Signs of Infestation

Look for trails of ants and debris (foam insulation and dead ants) deposited around nests. Acrobat ants can nest inside buildings, even inside insulated places, so don't forget to look inside as well.

Tips for Prevention

Keep food items secured and pet food off of the floors. Keep bushes and shrubs trimmed 2 foot from the home. Caulk any visible cracks around windows and doors.

Acrobat Ant Gallery

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