What Do Fire Ants Look Like?

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Fire ants are very little in size and are best known for their half-gallon mounds. Find out how to identify a fire ant in North America with information from an entomologist in this free video on insects and bugs.

Part of the Video Series: Insects & Bugs
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Video Transcript

I'm Mike Quinn. Been an entomologist for twenty years. And we're here at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center talking about what do fire ants look like. They're highly variable in their size and a little, little red ant. They're actually a little better known from their mounds which about the size of a, a half gallon if you will, on up. And so they typically erect these mounds after a rain event and when the soil's loosened up. And if you put a, a stick in a mound fire ants will come up that. Another way to tell if you have fire ants, if one stings you and it forms a pustule, not something you necessarily want to try out, but if, if one does sting you and you see that forming that's another way to identify fire ant. But we have a lot of ants throughout North America and so you can talk to your extension agent for specifics on how to identify and potentially control them. But a large mound forming ant that forms pustule and crawls up sticks and so those are some of the ways to identify a fire ant.

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