Frequently Asked ANT Questions

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Here is our FAQ section, go ahead and browse as you wish!

We accept VISA, MasterCard, American Express, Discover and Paypal. Please note that the available payment methods may change depending on your region. We do not accept cash on delivery.

We currently do not offer cash on delivery when you purchase online.

All sales are final. If your ants die in transit, we do offer in store credit. Please contact us with a picture, and we will send a gift card your way for you to reorder!

Once we receive your item, a refund is initiated immediately. All major credit card providers generally take 5-7 business days to process your refund before it appears in your bank account.
The best way to change your order is to contact our support or simply give us a call during our business hours. If an order is shipped, we won't be able to make any changes to your order and you would need to place a new order.

Orders are processed in the order we receive them unless you've chosen expedited shipping. You can track your order status on a tracking page & also signup for alerts on a courier website. (We usually have a system that auto-sends an email to you 24 hours after your purchase, if you can't find this email, feel free to use the live chat below to contact us!)

Carrier tracking would provide you with up-to-date information about your package. If it gets stuck or never gets delivered to you, please contact our support and we can assist you with the next steps.

Chances of receiving defective item is very rare but it could happen. Please take pictures and videos of the ants or product which shows defect clearly & contact our support to check if it's eligible for replacement.

Yes there are, please read and review this page prior to purchase. You will not be allowed to checkout without acknowledging you have read this page!

1) Ants must not be released into the environment

         Ants released into the environment may pose a serious environmental risk to environment and agriculture in your state. If you no longer want your ants, please look at number three. 

2) Do not redistribute ants purchased from this site

         Ants purchased from The Ant Vault must not be redistributed. Please make sure your ants are only kept for educational use. If you wish to sell them, or give them away, you will have to acquire the permits to do so!

3) How to dispose of ants

        Ants must be disposed by putting them in the freezer for 8 hours. Then, they must be placed in the trash. Even though this seems cruel, it is the best way to make sure that you are not hurting your ecosystem.

Environmental Awareness: Permit Number and Paper Copy Sent with All Shipments

USDA-Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service 


The live organisms you received are regulated by the United States Department of Agriculture for distribution to your State through a permit issued to the Biological Supply Company. A permit is necessary because these organisms could pose some risk to agriculture or the environment if misused. 

Your cooperation is essential to ensure the proper disposal of these live organisms when you are finished with your use. 

TO PROTECT your environment you must follow these 4 procedures: 

► Do not allow students or anyone else to take any organisms 


► Do not distribute the organism to anyone. 

► Do not release the organisms outdoors.

►  You must dispose of these live organisms (and all materials exposed to these organisms) by placing them into plastic bags and freezing them for 3 days before disposal in your regular trash. 

If you have any questions about the handling, keeping, or disposal of these organisms, please contact your supplier, The Ant Vault at or APHIS Plant Protection and Quarantine at: 866-524-5421 or 



Our Permits and Disclaimers: 

The Ant Vault is a Licensed distributor of living ants across the continental United States. The Ant Vault will abide by the permit conditions set forth by the United States Department of Agriculture and each participating states' department of agriculture.

The Ant Vault is a licensed through USDA-APHIS. The Ant Vault will not engage in any trade of the regulated species beyond what has been authorized. Anyone using our permits aside from The Ant Vault will be prosecuted federally.

The Ant Vault has a live arrival guarantee for all shipments of ants. If your order arrived dead, you must email us at within 3 hours of delivery with your order number and a picture of the colony.

The Ant Vault is not responsible for ants left outside after delivery. No exceptions. Ants are typically shipped Monday-Wednesday. Keep an eye on your email, it is imperative to follow up on where your ant package is to bring it in once it arrives!

It is imperative you follow the permit conditions outlined within the permit sent with your order. The Ant Vault will not participate in fueling the illegal trade, so please do not ask us to sell you an ant that is not listed on your states permit.

Our permits are changing weekly and will continue to be updated indefinitely. For if any reason the ant you are in search for is not available in your state, please contact us to request it added to the states permit.

All sales final. If you request an Order cancellation a 15% restocking fee will be charged on the total value of the order.

Picture rights purchased from Mason S, Alex Wild, Eduard Florin Niga 


  1. The Ant Vault sells and ships various species of ants for beginners, intermediates, and advanced ant keepers, including but not limited to harvester ants, honeypot ants, and carpenter ants.
  1. All of the ants are carefully packaged in a secure glass test tube with proper ventilation. The tube itself is wrapped in three layers of thick insulation to protect the ants in transit. We also follow all guidelines for shipping ants from the USDA.
  1. The expected shipping time for ants from The Ant Vault is typically 2-3 business days. We mostly express ship most of our ants to prevent any deaths during transit. We always offer LIVE guarantee on our ants, if you feel your ants arrived dead, please contact us and we are here to help. 
  1. Yes, we always offer expedited shipping for ants. At checkout, please switch your shipping option to expedited shipping.
  1. Once your ant shipment has been processed and shipped, you will receive a tracking number via email that you can use to track your package online. Your tracking will be sent within 24-48 hours after your order is processed! If you place your order on Thursday through Sunday, you will not receive a tracking number until Monday. We only ship Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday in the week to make sure that the ants can arrive without getting stuck over the weekend at the shipping office.
  1. Yes, we 100% guarantee the health and safety of our ants during the shipping process. If any issues arise, please contact our customer service team with pictures and videos and we should get back to you promptly. We love our ants and wish for them to arrive safely, just as much as you do!
  1. To ensure the health and safety of your ants upon arrival, it is important to follow the instructions provided for transferring them to their new habitat and providing proper care. There will be a instructions provided in your package during the shipping process! We will also provide an email with care instructions for your ants. 
  2. We are also always available via email and our live chat option. Please reach out to us if you have any questions in the processing of your order. We are happy to help :)
  1. If your ants arrive dead or in poor condition, please contact our customer service team immediately for assistance and next steps. We offer a 100% guarantee healthy and live arrival of our ants at your doorstep. Usually only 1 out of 100 orders end up dying, so if that happens to be you, we got your back! Feel free to contact us with pictures and videos so we can to ship out a new queen ant to you as quickly as possible. 

1. Ants can typically live in their shipping container for up to 1-2 weeks before they need to be transferred to their new habitat.

The Ant Vault provides detailed instructions on what to feed your ants based on the species you purchase. We also provide you options for you to add specialized ant food to your order in the product page.

The type of habitat or enclosure you should use for your ants depends on the species and the number of ants you have. The Ant Vault provides recommendations for each species sold on the product page of the ants you are deciding on.

  1. It is generally not recommended to keep multiple species of ants together as they may fight or compete for resources.

Yes, the ants sold by The Ant Vault are suitable as pets for ant enthusiasts and hobbyists. Especially if you are looking to start your own ant colony, you are in the right place!

The Ant Vault provides detailed instructions on how to handle and care for your ants after they arrive, including feeding, cleaning, and maintaining their habitat.

The Ant Vault offers returns and exchanges for ants in certain circumstances. Please refer to our refund policy for more information.

There may be some restrictions on where we can ship ants based on whether the ant species is native to your state. Please check right under the pictures of the ant on the product page to see if we are allowed to ship it to your state. 

The Ant Vault provides detailed information on each species of ant sold, including physical characteristics and behaviors, to help you identify the species you receive.

Yes, The Ant Vault offers discounts and promotions for bulk orders of ants. Please check our bulk section of our website for current offers. Please contact us via email if you wish to conduct wholesale orders with us.

Yes, majority of ants can generally be handled safely. However, it's important to note that some species may bite or cause allergic reactions in sensitive individuals. We recommend selecting ant species known for their gentle nature (see if they are child-safe in the description), and children should be supervised while handling ants.

No, surprisingly ants are actually cleaner than humans! When you get your first ant colony, you will see that they put all of their trash in a corner! With proper care and maintenance, keeping ants as pets can be hygienic. We provide guidelines in our careguides that we provide you after your purchase on keeping the ant enclosure clean and minimizing any potential risks of contamination or bacteria spread.

We prioritize designing ant enclosures that minimize the risk of escape. However, in the unlikely event that ants escape, there is no need to worry. The ants that we take care of are native species and cannot pose a threat or damage your household (like those pesky invasive ants). We provide tips in our careguide on making sure that your ants never escape. 

Ant-keeping requires little to no maintenance (about 1-2 hours a week)! That is why it is such a popular hobby amongst young kids. Parents love to get ants for their kids because they foster a sense of responsibility and empathy towards the environment.

Our ant enclosures are designed to be low-maintenance, and we provide guidelines on feeding, cleaning, and general care to ensure a healthy and thriving ant colony.

Ant keeping offers numerous educational benefits. It provides an opportunity for children to learn about ant behavior, social structures, and biology. It fosters a sense of responsibility and empathy towards living creatures and promotes curiosity and scientific exploration.

The cost of ant keeping can vary depending on the type of enclosure and ant species you choose. At The Ant Vault, we offer a range of options to fit different budgets. Our team can guide you in selecting the best ant-keeping setup based on your preferences and financial considerations.

Assessing your child's readiness for ant keeping involves considering their age, maturity level, and genuine interest in the hobby. Many parents start off their kids with ant-keeping when they are 4+ years old. The hobby provides a captivating and hands-on experience aswell as helping develop environmental consciousness.

We recommend parental supervision and involvement to ensure the responsible care of the ants and the overall success of the ant-keeping experience.

We are always here to help! We provide ongoing support and resources to our customers if they are having trouble with something. Our website also offers care guides, troubleshooting tips, and an email/contact form where ant keepers can share experiences and seek advice. Our dedicated customer support team is also available to answer any questions or concerns you may have. We are so happy you are beginning the journey of antkeeping!

Yes, black harvester ants are safe for kids to keep as pets. Very low maintanience and helps children form more empathy for our environment! However, adult supervision and responsible handling are crucial to ensure a positive and safe experience.

Yes, black harvester ants have the ability to bite, but their bites are not able to hurt humans at all since they are small and do not have sharp jaws (only used to pick up things)! They also cannot sting! They are great child-safe ants. It is always important to teach kids to handle the ants gently and avoid provoking them.

No, black harvester ants are not venomous or poisonous.

Kids should handle black harvester ants with care. It's advisable to use tweezers or forceps to pick up the ants, avoiding direct contact with their bodies. Encourage kids to handle the ants gently and avoid sudden movements or disturbing their nests.

Black harvester ants are primarily seed eaters. Provide them with a variety of seeds, such as sunflower seeds, millet, and oats. It's essential to ensure a balanced and appropriate diet for the ants to thrive.

Kids can create a habitat for black harvester ants using an ant farm or terrarium. The habitat should include a sandy substrate, a water source, and a secure lid or barrier to prevent escapes. Detailed instructions and guidelines are usually provided with ant farm kits.

Keeping black harvester ants can be an educational experience for kids. They can observe and learn about ant behavior, teamwork, and the natural environment. It can also foster a sense of responsibility, empathy, and respect for living creatures and the environment around them. 

Golden tailed ants are generally non-aggressive towards humans and other ant species. They are more focused on foraging and building their colonies. However, it's important to handle them with care and respect to avoid any unnecessary disturbances.

Golden tailed ants thrive in moderate temperatures ranging from 72 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit. They prefer moderate humidity levels, around 50% to 60%, to ensure a comfortable environment.

No, golden tailed ants are unable to sting humans. Their primary defense mechanism is their ability to bite if they feel threatened (which does not hurt).

Kids can observe the behaviors of golden tailed ants by setting up a suitable habitat, such as an ant farm that we have available, and providing them with the necessary food, water, and nesting materials. Regular observation and patience will allow kids to witness fascinating behaviors like foraging, tunneling, and caring for the brood.

Keeping golden tailed ants can be an educational experience for kids. They can observe and learn about ant behavior, social structure, and the intricacies of ant colonies. It can also foster a sense of responsibility, curiosity, and appreciation for the natural world.

Sunrise carpenter ants are omnivorous, and their diet should include a variety of foods. Offer them a mix of sugary substances like honey water, as well as protein sources like small insects or mealworms.

Yes, sunrise amber ants can be kept as pets, allowing for the observation of their intriguing behavior and social dynamics. They also grow slowly, allowing for a great long-term observing experience.

We recommend purchasing one of the nests we have for the sunrise amber ants. Or if you wish to build one on your own, you need to set up a habitat for sunrise amber ants, you will need an ant farm or terrarium with adequate ventilation. Provide a nesting area using a combination of sand and soil, along with hiding spots and tunnels for their exploration.

Sunrise amber ants are large ants, which makes them slow, and not able to escape our ant nests. However, if you want to be extra safe, you cna use fluon barrier (found in our shop) that prevents them from escaping.

Sunrise amber ants prefer moderate temperatures between 73 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit and moderate humidity levels around 50% to 60%. Monitoring and maintaining these conditions are important for their well-being. This is easily done for you by our nest designs!

Kids can observe the behaviors of sunrise amber ants by setting up a suitable habitat and providing food, water, and nesting materials. Regular observation will allow them to witness activities such as foraging, nest building, and tending to their brood.

When handling jumbo big-headed ants, it's important to be cautious to avoid harm to both the ants and yourself. Use tweezers or forceps to gently pick them up, avoiding direct contact. Teach kids to handle the ants calmly and avoid sudden movements.

Jumbo big-headed ants prefer moderate temperatures between 70 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit (room temp) and moderate humidity levels around 50% to 60%. Maintaining these conditions will contribute to their well-being. The humidity requirement is done for you by our great nest design! One less thing to think about when keeping ants

Kids can observe the behaviors of jumbo big-headed ants by setting up a suitable habitat and providing food, water, and nesting materials. Regular observation will allow them to witness activities such as foraging, colony organization, and interaction with other ants.

Jumbo big-headed ants have a diverse diet that includes both sugary substances like honey water or sugar water, and protein sources such as small insects or fruit flies. Offering a balanced diet is important for their health.

Jumbo big-headed ants can be suitable for kids to keep as pets, but adult supervision is advised. Proper care and responsible handling are necessary for their well-being.

Thanks for visiting The Ant Vault!