Bicoloured trailing ant

harms wildlife

lives in trees

day active
Scientific name: Monomorium floricola

Other common names: flower or floral ant

Size: 1.5-2 mm

Colour: head and abdomen dark brown to black, the middle part of its body is usually yellow to brown

General description: the bicoloured trailing ant is a very tiny, slow moving, unaggressive ant. Its head and abdomen are always much darker than the middle part of its body. Workers are all the same size.

Habitat and nesting: the bicoloured trailing ant is an almost exclusively tree dwelling species in the Pacific, that nests in small cavities, under the bark of trees and in hollow twigs and dry stems. The ant tends to invade and establish in disturbed environments, but does not readily settle in undisturbed forest. While the bicoloured trailing ant is commonly found in urban areas, it typically nests outside buildings.

Rate of spread: unknown.

Distribution: see our invasive ant distributions page for the worldwide distribution of the bicoloured trailing ant.

Reproduction: no information found.

For detailed descriptions and identification of bicoloured trailing ants:

PIAkey: Monomorium floricola (see diagnostic characters tab)

AntWeb: Monomorium floricola

Bicoloured trailing ant worker (© Alex WIld)

Bicoloured trailing ant queen surrounded by workers (© Darren McNabb)

Social, agricultural and environmental impacts of the bicoloured trailing ant

The bicoloured trailing ant can be a nuisance in houses where it will get into and eat food and is also known to nest in laptops and other items. It has a broad diet, which includes insect eggs, such as butterflies. It is considered a minor agricultural pest.

Information sources

AntWiki, Bicoloured trailing ant

Global Invasive Species Database (GISD)

Global Register of Introduced and Invasive Species (GRIIS)

Island Biodiversity and Invasive Species Database (IBIS)

Landcare Research Manaaki Whenua Ant Factsheet, Bicoloured trailing ant

PIAkey, Bicoloured trailing ant

Content reviewed by Eli Sarnat, Antwork Consulting, LLC, June 2017

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