Identifying and reporting electric ants

The search is on for electric ants. Register for a free yard check today and help eradicate electric ants from Far North Queensland.

Electric ants are category 1 restricted matter under the Biosecurity Act 2014, and all Queenslanders have a general biosecurity obligation to manage biosecurity risks and threats that are under their control, they know about or they are expected to know about.

Electric ants live in soil and most materials that touch soil, including plant and inorganic materials. Moving these materials poses a serious risk of spreading electric ants.

Identifying electric ants

Electric ants:

  • are tiny—about 1.5mm long
  • are golden brown in colour
  • are usually slow moving
  • are social and are often found in groups
  • establish colonies anywhere and have been found under stones, in potted plants, in garden waste, leaf litter, soil, trees, around swimming pools and water courses, and may be in wall cavities, clothing, bedding, garden furniture or camping gear
  • can be found in wet or dry conditions
  • can survive in water and may sting you in your swimming pool.
Electric ant size comparison to 5 cent coin
© Queensland Government
Electric ant size comparison to eye of a needle
© Queensland Government

It's vital that you are able to identify electric ants on your property. For more help with identification:

Reporting electric ants

  • Phone Biosecurity Queensland on 13 25 23 if you suspect electric ants are on your property. Reporting suspect ants will help to eradicate this serious pest.
  • Register for a free yard check.