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Ant Facts for Kids

Ant Facts for Kids

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What Exactly Are Ants?

Ants are common, colony-forming insects of the family Formicidae. Ants are related closely to wasps and bees, and it's estimated that ants evolved from a wasp-like ancestor about 140 million years ago. Scientists believe that there are about 22,000 species of ants, but only about 12,500 species have been classified. Ants have three distinct body regions: a head, thorax (the middle section), and abdomen (the rear section), and have two long antennae.


  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Pyhlum: Anthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Hymenoptera
  • Family: Formicidae

Weirdly Wonderful Ant Facts for Kids

  • Entomologists estimate that the average ant can lift between 10-50 times its body weight. That would be similar to a 1st grader being able to pick up and carry a car.

  • Ants don't have lungs, but rather small holes in their bodies that let oxygen (O2) in and carbon dioxide (CO2) out.

  • Queen ants can live for many years and have millions of babies. If the queen ant dies, the entire colony will usually only survive a few months.

  • Ants can run at a speed of about 800 times their body length every minute.

  • Ants don't have ears. Instead, they use their legs to sense vibrations in the ground.

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