Do Worms and Earthworms Eat Ants? (Interesting Facts)

Worms and earthworms live underground, and you may find them sharing the same space with ants. Since they share the same area, you probably wonder if they interact with each other or if they hurt each other. Thus, you may ask:

Do worms and earthworms eat ants? Worms and earthworms don’t eat ants. While they eat the soil and what’s in it, they prefer microbes on decaying matter to ants. They may have the same food preference as ants, but they don’t eat each other. Still, some types of ants can get aggressive and harm worms.

Earthworms and ants have many things to share. Thus, it’s not surprising to see them competing against each other. Still, it’s not actually in their nature to fight.

If you want to know more about both animals, read on. In this article, we’ll tackle questions related to worms and how they interact with ants.

Without further ado, let’s get into it!

Do worms kill and eat ants?

Worms don’t kill and eat ants. While they share similar preferences when it comes to territory, they don’t prey on each other.

Though ants take the food that may go to the worms, the worms don’t eat the ants, and most types of ants won’t eat the worms.

Since most ants live in the ground, the earthworms are the kind that they usually encounter.

Another place would be the trash bins, where you can find scraps and decaying food. In such areas, both worms and ants are usually present.

Earthworms prefer to eat dead and decaying matter. Further, they usually go for plant-based food. Still, they may eat small dead insects, such as dead ants.

In general, worms may eat ants, but only if they’re dead ones. Further, ants can be quite defensive and sting the worms.

Now, since both ants and worms don’t prey on each other, you may wonder if they can work together.

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Can ants and worms work together?

If you’ve spent some time with gardening or other related activities, you may have an idea of how ants and worms share the soil.

Still, despite the idea, both animals don’t work together. Worms continue to burrow and eat while ants have their structure.

In essence, they don’t compete and harm each other, and they can share the same resources. Thus, they may seem to be working together.

Still, it’s far from working in cooperation to serve each other’s needs.

In a nutshell, most ants can live together with worms. However, some types can prey on worms.

While they can share the same resources, it’s not like both animals to work together.

Do some ants kill worms?

As I said earlier, not all ants kill worms, but some can, and they will do so given a chance.

Most species of ants won’t harm the worms physically. However, some ants are quite aggressive, and they can kill some worms.

Among these ants are carpenter ants, fire ants, and army ants. Of course, such ants don’t encounter worms often. However, when such ants do, they can bite worms to death.

Another way to harm earthworms is by taking away most of their resources.

worm and ants

Do ants harm earthworms?

Since ants and earthworms share territories, it’s not surprising to find one harming the other. One way ants can harm earthworms is by taking the resources away.

For instance, ants can be quite industrious when it comes to gathering food. Since they get every bit and piece, they can deplete the food source that worms also seek.

Due to their large numbers, they can outsource tasks, unlike worms, do. For this reason, the worms may get forced to leave the area since all nutrients got taken by ants.

In such instances, you may want to find a way to protect earthworms from ants.

How do you protect earthworms from ants?

If you’re a gardener or farmer, you know how crucial worms are in your plants and ground. Thus, you may want to protect them from ants.

The best way to protect earthworms from ants is by preventing them from getting near the worms.

For instance, you can put the worms in a worm bin and protect them from ants. You can apply a sticky coat such as petroleum jelly or tanglefoot.

Since the petroleum jelly wears off, you may need to maintain it by repeating the application once in a while.

In general, it should be enough to prevent ants from accessing your worms and harming them.


In a nutshell, worms and earthworms don’t eat ants. Although they live in the same areas, they don’t go out and harm each other. They may share the same resources, and the other one will get more than the other.

Still, worms prefer dead and decaying ants rather than live ones. On the other hand, ants don’t eat worms, but they can get aggressive and harm the worms.

For this reason, you may need to do something to prevent ants from eating worms. It’s a crucial thing, especially if you want worms to till your ground and give castings.


Image credits – Canva

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