Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
James C. Trager
Originally published in:
Missouri Prairie Journal
Ants are a little-noticed but important part of the tallgrass prairie fauna. There are perhaps 100 species of ants that may be found in prairie tracts over the whole region, of which about 60 are typically found in prairies (Table 1). In a good-sized prairie remnant, 25-35 of these occur together, somewhat fewer than the number of, say, butterfly species, but individual ants are so numerous that they collectively outweigh many other prairie insect groups. In one Oklahoma prairie, ants were among the top three prairie insect groups, their biomass exceeding that of grasshoppers (Kucera 1991). This paper briefly reviews the ecological roles of ants in prairies, their biogeographic and taxonomic characteristics, and their relationships to prairie restoration and management activities.
Trager, James C. 1998. An introduction to ants (Formicidae) of the tallgrass prairie. Missouri Prairie Journal. Vol. 18:4-8.This resource should be cited as:
Trager, James C. 1998. An introduction to ants (Formicidae) of the tallgrass prairie. Missouri Prairie Journal. Vol. 18:4-8. Jamestown, ND: Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center Online. http://www.npwrc.usgs.gov/resource/insects/ants/index.htm (Version 17MAY99).