Leafcutter Ants – Identification

Q: My daughter sent this from Tucson :

“On our walk this morning the dog and I saw an ant colony that had surrounded the entrance to the anthill with purple and yellow flower petals. The whole hill was carpeted with color! Who knows if they eat the flowers or if it’s just for decoration?”

Have you heard of this before?

A: According to Master Gardener Sue Burg in the Pima County Extension office, these are leafcutter ants. They line their underground nests with leaves and petals. Sometimes not everything gets carried underground, so the nest surface is littered with flower petals and debris.

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Leafcutter Ants

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