Crematogaster scutellaris (Mediterranean Acrobat Ant)
This mediterranean species is rather popular due to its attractive red and black bicolourism. Additionally, its small size makes them easier to keep as large ant farms are not required even when the colony becomes larger with several thousands of workers.
Acrobat ants? What's that about? Do they do flip jumps? Not quite. Instead, they're known as this as they will point their heart shaped gaster vertically at a 90 degrees angle when they're threatened. This fearsome stance gives the impression of the ant being highly flexible and hence its name!
In the wild, arboreal nests are often associated with tree trunks, especially Mediterranean pine forests! They take advantage of hollow concavities to make their nest.
They are a species of ant that is easily provoked and their aggresion is very well shown, especially when in larger numbers. It's suitable for beginners or more experienced enthusiasts alike. In terms of growth they are quite fast to develop once the colony reaches 20 workers and over. Due to the nature of their natural environment, these ants are active throughout most of the year except December - early March and would benefit from a hibernation period.
It is illegal and strictly frowned upon to release any non-native ants into the wild.