Polyrachis hookeri Click to enlarge image
Golden-spined Ant, Polyrachis hookeri from the Royal National Park Image: Andrew Donnelly
© Australian Museum

Fast Facts

  • Classification
    Species
    ammon
    Genus
    Polyrhachis
    Subfamily
    Formicinae
    Family
    Formicidae
    Super Family
    Vespoidea
    Suborder
    Apocrita
    Order
    Hymenoptera
    Phylum
    Arthopoda
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    8 mm - 11 mm

Golden-spined or Golden Ants have a metallic sheen to their body, which is covered in golden hairs.

Identification

Golden-spined Ants have a strangely spined thorax, probably used in defence against predators.

Habitat

Found in urban areas, forests and woodlands, heath, Golden-spined Ants often nest in sand at the base of shrubs and trees.

Distribution

Golden-spined Ants are found throughout Australia.

Seasonality

Many Golden-spined Ants stay in their nest during wet or extremely hot periods.

Feeding and diet

Golden-spined Ants are omnivores. They collect nectar and pollen from a wide range of plants including eucalypts and acacias. They also collect dew from these plants early in the morning. They forage as individuals and can be seen on food-collecting missions at most times and in most weather conditions.