What Are Bull Ants?


Quick Answer

Bull ants are an aggressive and large species of ants that are indigenous to Australia. They are defenders and will attack any intruder that approaches their nest.

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Bull ants, or Myrmecia gulosa, are among the biggest types of ants in Australia as well as the world. They grow to around 1 inch long and their mouths are about 1/6 the size of their bodies. They are commonly referred to as bull ants because they are fiercely protective of their colonies as well as themselves. They are fighting ants and will sometimes attack unprovoked.

The bull ant stinger contains a venom that can be extremely detrimental to humans. They attack by stinging with a stinger that protrudes from their stomachs. They can continuously sting a person or other predator and will not stop until they feel there is no longer a threat. Their stings do not contain any barbs, but many humans have allergic reactions to the stings and the venom that is injected with the stinger. These reactions can include anaphylactic responses that can become fatal.

Unlike many other ant species, the bull ants do not work together in highly organized colonies when searching for food. They work independently and even allow the queen ant to find her own food. While they do not necessarily work together when it comes to nutrition, they work together to help take care of the larvae and young ants.

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