Florida Harvester Ant
Pest Solutions of Tampa Bay
Large dull, reddish-brown ants. Many sized workers, though largest workers are rare. Head square. Carpenter ants of the same size will be shinier and bicolored, while harvester ants are dull and uniform in coloration. Painful sting, although ant is not aggressive. Foragers leave nest in long trunk trails and disperse a few feet from the entrance to forage alone. May recruit to large sources of protein or piles of seed. They can sometimes be seen collecting seed after they drop from plants.
Nest Sites & Characteristics
Their nests are in the ground and have characteristic large, flat disks kept free of vegetation. The single nest entrance may contain a collection of small, uniformly sized objects around, such as charcoal bits or pebbles. Single queen per nest. Nest in full sum in sandy soils. Nests may periodically relocate in response to shading.
6.4-10.25 mm (1/4 - 2/5 in ), polymorphic. Long hairs on the underside of the head form a basket used to carry damp sand. Twelve-segmented antennae. Two-segmented petiole. Sting. Subfamily Myrmicinae.