Eciton burchelli army ants (black) protect their foraging column (left side) from a line of Atta leafcutter ants (red).
This kind of interaction is very common but rarely leads to violence because neither ant could easily win such a conflict.



There are about 150 species of army ants in the New World (i.e. North, South and central America). They are all classified in the insect tribe Ecitonini. Although army ant species are found from Kansas to Argentina. Few people in North America realize that there are plenty of army ants living in the US because most army ants only come out at night and many live underground.

Eciton burchelli and Eciton hamatum are the most visible and best studied of the army ants because they forage above ground and during the day. Their range stretches from southern Mexico to the northern part of South America.

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