Mallorca's giant ant. | Majorca Daily Bulletin reporter


It is one of the ten largest ant species in the world and it has been found in Mallorca. The giant ant, Camponotus barbaricus, a species endemic to North Africa and the Iberian Peninsula, has recently been found on the island.

This species is currently the largest ant in the Balearics, worker ants can reach a length of 15 mm (1.5 cm). The queens are much larger still. It remains to be seen whether this species has recently colonised the islands or whether it has gone unnoticed until now, which is highly improbable due to its size.

The discovery of this species has been revealed by the Balearic Natural History Society members Joan Díaz Calafat and Jorge Fortis. The specimens are now in the collection at the Balearic Museum of Natural Sciences.

The authors point out that this is a predatory and aggressive species that attacks other invertebrates. Two other species of the genus Camponotus were already known in the Balearic Islands: C. lateralis and C. ruber, both much smaller than C. barbaricus. Up to now, some sixty species of ants have been found in the Balearics.