Moving 7,000 ants from Switzerland to the UK!

A safe journey for the tiny travellers


Restore Harrow Green Laboratory Services recently completed an extraordinary relocation project, moving 7,000 ants of seven different species from Switzerland to Cambridge.


The journey began with extensive preparation ensuring we had all relevant paperwork in place for the stringent export/import customs clearances including APHA clearances and accurate lab relocation project commercial invoices. Once on site, this was then followed by a packing phase, designed to ensure the safety and well-being of these tiny travellers.

Given the ants’ sensitivity to environmental changes, the packing process was executed with precision, keeping their habitat intact and as stress-free as possible. Once secured, the ants embarked on their journey through Europe, navigating testing weather conditions that tested the resilience and adaptability of our crew.


The entire transit was conducted in a specially equipped, temperature-controlled vehicle, meticulously maintained at 20 degrees Celsius, with a narrow margin of +/- 5 degrees Celsius to simulate the ants’ natural conditions. This careful temperature management was crucial for the ants’ survival, providing a stable environment throughout the journey.


This phase of the relocation was carried out by a four-man crew with two prepping and packing and the other half of the team driving. Their expertise and vigilance were essential in navigating the challenges posed by the weather and the intricacies of transporting such fragile cargo over long distances.


Upon arrival in Cambridge, the ants were introduced to their new home. This relocation demonstrated our logistical capabilities. Following the successful relocation of the ants, our team returned the following week to move their laboratory equipment and temperature-controlled samples, ensuring that their new habitat was fully equipped to support their well-being and research purposes.


This two-phased operation underlines Restore Harrow Green Lab Service’s ability to handle complex laboratory logistics with a tailored approach, ensuring the safety and satisfaction of the most unusual requirements.


This ant relocation project is a shining example of our ability to adapt to the needs of any client. Restore Harrow Green Lab Services will care for all complex lab relocation projects great or small.

Project manager for the move, Richard Lancaster said: “This was a very precise and meticulously planned move. Ensuring all documentation and clearance was completed prior to the move and that we had the vehicles to move the ants keeping the temperature and environment they needed to survive the journey to their new home."

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