Ant Activities

Ants at a Picnic Activity
Complete the ants at a picnic activity to watch ants steal your lunch.
Complete the ants at a picnic activity to watch ants steal your lunch.

The ants at a picnic activity lets you invite ants to join you for lunch. With peanut butter, bread, and jelly as bait, you can watch as ants creep up and steal your picnic.

What You'll Need:

  • Paper plate
  • Breadcrumbs
  • Peanut butter
  • Fruit jelly
  • Chair

How to do the ants at a picnic activity:

Step 1: For lunch, serve peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. On a paper plate, set out a pile of tiny ant-size breadcrumbs, a small dab of peanut butter, and a small dab of jelly. Set the piles slightly apart from each other on the plate.

Step 2: Set your chair near the ant colony, and put the paper plate down. Keep your feet off the ground. Observe how long it takes until the first ant finds the food.

What happens after the first ant shows up? Observe how many ants eat each type of food. Do they prefer peanut butter, jelly, or bread?

Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are

Safety Tip:

Set up a chair prior to putting the food down. Sit in the chair with your feet off the ground. Do not do this project if your yard has biting ants or if you are sensitive or allergic to ant bites.

What Happened?

It might have taken a little while for the first ant to find your picnic. But when it did, the other ants in the colony knew soon enough. Quickly, lots of ants came to the plate.

Ants like the energy they get from sugary substances, so perhaps your jelly pile had the most ants. The ants carried food back to the colony. This was probably easiest to see when they carried the light-colored breadcrumbs.

Do ants like foods other than peanut butter and jelly sandwiches? Complete the hungry ants activity in the next section to find out the answer.

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