Pacific Pests, Pathogens and Weeds - Online edition

Pacific Pests, Pathogens, Weeds & Pesticides

Green weaver ant (386)

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  • Restricted distribution. In Oceania, Australia, Papua New Guinea, and Solomon Islands. Prey includes sap-sucking bug, beetles, caterpillars, thrips, fruit flies on many crops of economic importance; tends aphids, mealybugs and scales for honeydew. Do not sting, but bite and spray formic acid. Move quickly and defend nests when distributed.
  • Adults, yellow to reddish brown, build nests (usually in groups up to half million ants) in trees fastening leaves together. Queen in one nest, but eggs distributed to others. Workers are major (forage, defend) and minor (care for brood, collect honeydew).
  • Biosecurity: A generalist, requiring an import risk analysis before considering importing this invasive ant.
  • Management: in Vietnam farmers use ants in citrus, providing canes between trees to assist foraging; reports of good pest control in cashew, mango, and plantation trees (Australia), oranges (Africa). Control of pests of coconuts and cocoa (Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands) less successful due to competition from other ants.
Common Name

Green weaver ant. It is also known as the green tree ant.

Scientific Name

Oecophylla smaragdina

AUTHOR Grahame Jackson
Information from Antweb. (; and Weaver ant. Wikipedia. (; and Repelling fruit flies by weaver ants in oranges. Plantwise Factsheet for Farmers. Plantwise Knowledge Bank. (; and from Peng R, Christian K (2007).The effect of the weaver ant, Oecophylla smaragdina (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), on the mango seed weevil, Sternochetus mangiferae (Coleoptera: Curculionidae), in mango orchards in the Northern Territory of Australia. International Journal of Pest Management, 53(1), 15-24. Photo 1 Muhammad Mahdi Karim Red weaver ant, Oecophylla smaragdina in Bangalore, India. (,_Oecophylla_smaragdina.jpg). Photos 2&3 Howard Ensign Evans, Colorado State University, Photo 4 Basile Morin Nest of Oecophylla smaragdina (weaver ants), made of green leaves welded together. (

Produced with support from the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research under project HORT/2016/18: Responding to emerging pest and disease threats to horticulture in the Pacific islands, implemented by the University of Queensland and the Pacific Community.

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