With a length of approximately one-eighth of an inch, acrobat ants are on the small side. Their shiny bodies range in color from light red to brown to black. Acrobat ants can be identified by their unique heart-shaped gaster, or abdomen. When disturbed, a worker can raise its gaster above its thorax, hence the term “acrobat.”
Habits and Behavior
Pine trees are the most common habitat of acrobat ants. They are extremely territorial and will not “share” a tree with another colony. Each colony has a single queen that resides at the bottom of the tree while the rest of the colony extends along the full length, creating the need for a high level of communication as workers attend to tasks.
Homeowners may find acrobat ants foraging in the yard, but they sometimes move indoors in search of sweets and proteins. Since acrobat ants nest in damp and decaying wood, their presence inside a home is often indicative of a larger structural problem that must be corrected.
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