School of Ants

School of Ants

Public Science | Your Wild Life Projects

Ants are ubiquitous. They are widespread and diverse, yet despite how familiar ants are to us and how often we may encounter them in our daily lives (sometimes more often than we would like), we actually know relatively little about their diversity and distribution, particularly in urban areas. The species we interact with most frequently – those that are commonly found in backyards and on sidewalks, in street medians and on playgrounds – are the very same species we know the least about.

The School of Ants project is a citizen scientist driven study of the ants that live around homes and schools. Participation is open to anyone interested! The data are collected by thousands of citizen scientists gives us valuable data about the diversity and distribution of ants across the United States.

Project website:
Your Wild Life blog posts: School of Ants


Student Lessons


Project Publications

Vitone, T., Stofer, K. A., Steininger, M.S., Hulcr, J., Dunn, R. and Lucky, A. (2016). ‘School of Ants goes to college: integrating citizen science into the general education classroom increases engagement with science’. JCOM 15 (01), A03. View PDF.

Lucky, A., Savage, A.M. (co-first author), Nichols, L.M., Castracani, C., Shell, L., Grasso, D.A., Mori, A. and Dunn R.R. (2014). Ecologists, educators and writers collaborate with the public to assess backyard diversity in The School of Ants Project. Ecosphere 5(7). View PDF.

Project Creations