Ant Harvest


Insects are the most abundant forms of animal life on the planet, and should not be passed up as a source of food in the wilderness.  Ants are a great insect for survival food because they make colonies with massive populations.  But with their small size, it can be difficult to gather up enough of them to satisfy your hunger.  Here’s a technique for making that a lot easier, all you need is a tarp or even a large trash bag.


  • Most importantly you need to find an ant colony first. The technique will work better if you can find a colony in a mound, it will be harder if the colony is underground.
  • Lay your tarp or bag down near the ant hill. Use nearby material like stones and sticks to raise the outer portions of the tarp higher than the center.  This is to make it difficult for the ants to escape when you transfer them onto the tarp.
  • Cover one portion of the tarp to create shade, if no other material is available you can make a fold in the tarp itself.
  • Dig into the ant mound with whatever you have available. They are likely to bite and sting if they get a chance to, so if all you have is your bare hands you will want to be quick and to wipe your hands in between each scoop you remove.
  • When you dig down enough to see what looks like little grains of rice, you are deep enough. Those aren’t rice though, those are larva, and that’s what you are after more than the adult ants.
  • Throw the larva, along with the mound material and the adults ants onto the sunny side of the tarp.
  • The adult ants will sort everything out for you. They will put attacking you on hold to transfer the larva from the hot sun to the shady portion of the tarp where you can easily harvest them along with the adults.

This is an easy way to get valuable protein when surviving in the wilderness.  It requires only a tarp, and not very much energy on your part since your food brings itself to you.

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