California Harvester Ant
A scattering of discarded seed husks on a patch of sandy ground signals the presence of a California Harvester Ant nest. Workers barricade themselves in the nest at night, opening the entrances in the morning to forage for seeds. Some of the seeds stored in the underground granaries sprout before they’re eaten, and grow in the rich soil produced by the ant nest. Watch out: this ant’s bite and sting are both painful.
Many native plants of the chaparral depend on the Harvester Ant to disperse their seeds.
What’s for Lunch:
Underground nests in chaparral or coastal sage scrub