Welcome to the wonderful world of ants!

Have your kids ever asked you what type of ant is crawling along the patio? What about the one they spotted in the backyard or discovered while out camping?

Now the answers to those tricky questions from young inquisitive minds can be at their fingertips.

The Wet Tropics Management Authority has launched its new Amazing Ants of the Wet Tropics Field Guide – a free, fun and interactive guide to the amazing world of ants found in Cairns and far north Queensland.

The Wet Tropics World Heritage Area is home to some of the world’s most unique ant species, from the ultra-rare ‘punk ant’ to the world’s only swimming ant to the common green ant found in most backyards. 

The guide takes readers on an educational journey highlighting the wonderful array of ants found throughout the region.

The Wet Tropics Management Authority’s Project Manager Lucy Karger said the field guide is an extremely beneficial resource for parents and budding young scientists.

“This is a fun, easy to use guidebook that is suitable for kids of all ages to help them gain an understanding of ants, ant ecology and native biodiversity,” Ms Karger said.

“It will help answer the common questions in an interesting, educational and engaging way as well as raising awareness around native versus invasive ant species.

“But more importantly it will take readers on a journey and explain the ecological importance of ants in our local environment.”

Australia is home to more ant species than any other country in the world.

There are 1,700 native species found in Australia, including 996 in Queensland alone, with the Wet Tropics home to many of them.

The free Amazing Ants of the Wet Tropics Field Guide will be available at the Wet Tropics Management Authority’s Yellow Crazy Ant Eradication Program stall located inside the Fred Moule Pavilion at the Cairns Show.

Copies will also be made available to schools across the region.

Alternatively, if you would like to secure your copy, please email yca@wtma.qld.gov.au

The Wet Tropics Management Authority administers a $24 million Yellow Crazy Ant Eradication Program, which is jointly funded by the Australian and Queensland governments to combat the spread of the highly invasive species.

Welcome to the wonderful world of ants!

Published: 10th Jul 2024

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