UT Fire Ant Lab
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Sieving the ants

A sieve of the type used for soils is dusted with baby powder to prevent ants from crawling out.

Dusting sieve with baby powder for fire ants

The ants are put through a sieve to sort them into size classes of large and small ants. The phorid fly Pseudacteon tricuspis develops into a male from an egg laid in a small ant and into a female from an egg laid in a large ant. The lab uses a precise mix of large and small ants in the attack arenas to produce a majority female population and thus maximize production of the females.

Sieve with fire ants

A lab tech (wearing gloves!) helps to move the ants and brood through the sieving process.

Sieving fire ants

sieving ants

Go to:

Main Menu, Lab Tour intro

1. Drip line, 2. Formicary, 3. Sieving, 4. Mass Attack, 5. Rearing pupae

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