Acromyrmex striatus (Leafcutter ant)


This is a species of leaf cutting ant meaning that they cut a variety of leaves and flowers. Interestingly, it's not for the ants own consumption but for their symbiotic fungus! That's right.. ants cultivate their own fungus through this mutualistic relationship and in return, receive the appropiate nutrients from the fungus to feed their developing brood.


This colourful ant displays interesting colour morpholgoy due to their yellow bilateral stripes on their gaster and a reddish/brown thorax unlike your common leafcutter ant of the Acromyrmex genus.


Acromyrmex striatus like most other leafcutter ants, are tropical and require specific temperature to thrive, more specifically, so that their Lepiotaceae fungus cultivar can succesfully grow and break down the leaf matter they bring in. Therefore, whilst these ants are relatively easy to keep, it's important to ensure that the setup is controlled to provide a steady temperature of 22-24C and a humidity of 80-95% with the adequate ventilation. 


Unlike their Atta spp. counterparts, colonies typically don't grow extremely large (into the millions) and usually reach peak maturity after a few thousand individuals, which makes them suitable to your typical home environment, without having to think about space too much.


In summary - a relatively rare, colourful species of leafcutter ant from S.America which is easy to keep once the temperature and humidity parameters can be controlled accurately. 


It is illegal and strictly frowned upon to release any non-native ants into the wild. 

Acromyrmex striatus