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Asian Myrmecology, Volume 3, pages 9-20, published April 2010

Species composition and nesting habits of ants in a hill-country home garden in Sri Lanka

HARINDRA E. AMARASINGHE

Department of Zoology, Faculty of Science, University of Peradeniya, Peradeniya, Sri Lanka.

DOI: 10.20362/am.003003

© H. E. Amarasinghe

Abstract: This study attempts to identify the ants nesting in a home garden in the hill-country of Sri Lanka and to describe their nest morphology with a view to using the same for their identification. A total of 21 ant species were recorded from the home garden by a combination of methods, and of these, eight also occurred indoors. A total of 1,363 nests belonging to 18 species inhabiting the home garden were encountered, and their external morphology is described. Nest longevity of these species varies greatly, from over 25 years in Myrmicaria brunnea to only a few weeks in some species. Only five species of ants nested indoors; selecting damp, shady and hidden locations and moving readily upon disturbance.

Keywords: Formicidae, species composition, nesting types, home garden

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