How can you tell the difference between fire ants and pyramid ants?

Differences between the two are not always obvious, but here are some good clues to look for:

  • Body Type-The body types of each of these ants are similar, but there are some defining differences. Pyramid Ants are orange-red on the thorax and abdomen. They may have some darker red mottling on their body, but they are primarily orange-red. Fire Ants have a deep red thorax and black abdomen.
  • Mound Type-The mounds are the easiest visible determiner between Fire Ants and Pyramid Ants. Both mounds are round, but Fire Ant mounds are flat and are usually much larger in diameter. Fire Ant mounds almost look like someone dumped a shovel full of dirt on the ground and flattened it. Pyramid Ant mounds are raised off the ground into a distinct cone or pyramid shape, almost like a small volcano or funnel.
  • Behavior-The biggest difference behaviorally is that Pyramid Ants are peaceful and Fire Ants are aggressive. If you disturb the ground near a Fire Ant mound, the ants will aggressively rise up in great numbers from beneath the mound and begin attacking anything that is standing above or near it. Pyramid Ants will hastily retreat up the sides of their cone shaped nest to the entrance at the top, and disappear into the mound to hide.
  • Diet-Fire Ants are not picky eaters. They will eat almost any plant or animal matter but they prefer high-protein foods such as young seedlings and animals. Pyramid Ants like fats and oils from insects. Fire Ants are destructive to plants and animals and Pyramid Ants control insect populations and are helpful to the environment.

We hope this has been helpful.  If you are still unsure, give us a call at 239-244-1436 and we will be happy to help!