Blue Ant

blueantDiamma bicolor

Family: Tiphiidae
Order: Hymenoptera

Identification:

Ant-like insect up to 23mm long with polished blue-green body and reddish legs. Runs on ground in a jerky, restless motion with abdomen raised. Not a real ant but a wingless female wasp. Male has wings, is smaller (about 15mm long), slimmer and black with white spots on abdomen, looks more like a typical wasp.

Distribution:

Tasmania and south-eastern mainland Australia, in New South Wales, the ACT, Victoria and South Australia. A native species.

Life history:

Female runs on ground in search of tunnelling mole crickets, which she paralyses with a sting and lays an egg on. Hatching wasp larva consumes cricket. Adult wasps of both sexes feed on nectar.

Pest Status:

Female has a very painful sting.

Management:

There are no control measures, although the less habitat (lawns) you provide for Mole crickets, the less Blue ants there will probably be. But Blue ants are usually not common anyway.

Warning:

Keep clear of blue ants. They sting severely.


First Aid:

Ice pack applied to sting site.

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