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How to Make an Ant Farm

We wouldn't recommend using fire ants!
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Ants can be great fun to observe and they are easy to keep. Here we'll show you how to make a homemade ant farm out of a mason jar. However, if you are younger than 14, get your parents’ permission first. And we would suggest getting a much more harmless ant than a fire ant! You don’t want to put yourself in danger of fire ant bites. Also, keep in mind that you should only collect ants to observe them. Don’t keep them more than 2 or 3 days. Always release them back into the habitat where you caught them.

Building Your Own Ant Farm

Hey Kids!

Did you know that if you were as strong as an ant, you could lift a grown-up?
  1. The best cage to observe ants in a live ant farm is a large jelly jar or mason jar. If you are using the metal screw-on top as its lid, punch 6 to 8 small air holes into it. Be sure they aren't big enough for the ants to crawl out. You can also stretch a piece of fine material, like nylon or muslin, over the top and attach it with a strong rubber band.
  2. Partly fill the jar with soil and cover the outside with a dark colored paper. (You want to make it dark inside so they feel like they are underground.) Fasten it to the jar with masking tape.
  3. Dig up an ant nest in your yard and try to find the biggest ant (a queen). Wear gloves because the worker ants will try to defend her.
  4. Put the queen in her new home with as many worker ants as you can collect.
  5. Feed the ants every day with a little sugar or honey sprinkled on the soil surface.
  6. In time they will excavate tunnels against the glass. Remove the paper around the jar from time to time to see how they are doing.

Buy a Ready Made Ant Farm

If you're not interested in making your own ant farm, a simple search on the internet will show you plenty or places to buy one.

Don't Make an Ant Farm using FireAnts

Ok, so you happen to have plenty of fireants around, why not make a Fire Ant Farm???

It doesn't take but little ant that gets out and stings someone to make your home very unpleasant.

You have been warned!

Read more about ant farms.

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How to Build an Ant Farm

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