General Description

Body red-brown to black with large, toothed mouthparts (mandibles) at the front of the head and large compound eyes. Length varies from 8 to 40 mm.

Biology

Bull Ants feed on sweet secretions from plants and insects, but also catch entire insects to feed to their larvae. They use their powerful sting to kill prey. They can sting humans if disturbed, sometimes causing an allergic reaction. Most species nest underground in debris, decaying tree stumps, rotten logs, rocks, sand and soil, and under stones. The nests can extend several metres below ground. On the sruface the nests can be mound-shaped and often have cleared areas around entrance holes. Most species are diurnal (active during the day), and forage on the ground or on low vegetation. One species in the genus is considered vulnerable to extinction.

Distribution

Mainland Australia and Tasmania.

Habitat

Urban areas, forests and woodland.

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