Tawny Crazy Ant


Actual Size: ⅛”

Characteristics: Golden-brown to reddish-brown.

Legs: 6

Antennae: Yes

Wings: Males and females have wings, but rarely fly.

Habitat: Known for infesting sheltered areas near electrical equipment, inside of car engines, and other secluded areas.


  • Also called “raspberry” crazy ants.
  • Follows erratic and unpredictable movement patterns.
  • Primarily nests near electrical equipment, and have even been found inside of TVs, computers, and other appliances.

Tawny Crazy Ants in Memphis TN Metro Area

Tawny crazy ants, also known as “raspberry ants,” were initially introduced to the public in Texas back in 2002. Since then, they have expanded their presence to the Memphis TN Metro Area area, and there are indications that they may be displacing fire ants. These ants earned their name due to their beige coloration and peculiar trailing behavior. Like other ants, tawny crazy ants follow pheromone trails, but their distinctive long legs and sporadic movements give them an erratic appearance, contrasting with the organized marching of other ant species. Their disruptive behavior can lead to detrimental effects, such as damaging grass, displacing other insects, and causing harm to electrical equipment. As a result, both urban and rural areas can experience negative consequences due to the presence of tawny crazy ants.

Tawny Crazy Ant Habitat

Tawny crazy ants are adept at constructing substantial nests, often in close proximity to moisture sources. They utilize any available gaps or crevices for nest placement, including leaf debris, waste material, and damp soil, as well as other sheltered environments. While their colonies are primarily situated outdoors, these ants will venture indoors in search of meat and sugary treats. Notably, nests have been discovered in various locations such as potted plants, tree stumps, and even electrical equipment. Tawny crazy ants engage in a unique behavior of tending aphids, consuming the sweet honeydew they produce. Additionally, they exhibit a predatory nature, preying on live animals and scavenging from deceased organisms.

Tawny Crazy Ant Behaviors, Threats, or Dangers

While tawny crazy ants are capable of biting, they lack a stinger. The resulting pain from their bite is generally mild and fades rapidly. However, their foraging tendencies make them prone to entering homes, where they are particularly attracted to electrical equipment. This behavior puts electronics at risk of destruction and creates potential fire hazards. Infestations of tawny crazy ants have been observed in various appliances, including televisions, stereos, and computer equipment. As they chew through insulated wiring, they can cause electrical shorts, leading to hazardous fire situations. If there is suspicion of a tawny crazy ant infestation, seeking the guidance of a professional ant exterminator