In this paper, a hybrid configuration of ant colony optimization (ACO) with artificial bee colony (ABC) algorithm called hybrid ACO–ABC algorithm is presented for optimal location and sizing of distributed energy resources (DERs) (i.e., gas turbine, fuel cell, and wind energy) on distribution systems. The proposed algorithm is a combined strategy based on the discrete (location optimization) and continuous (size optimization) structures to achieve advantages of the global and local search ability of ABC and ACO algorithms, respectively. Also, in the proposed algorithm, a multi-objective ABC is used to produce a set of non-dominated solutions which store in the external archive. The objectives consist of minimizing power losses, total emissions produced by substation and resources, total electrical energy cost, and improving the voltage stability. In order to investigate the impact of the uncertainty in the output of the wind energy and load demands, a probabilistic load flow is necessary. In this study, an efficient point estimate method (PEM) is employed to solve the optimization problem in a stochastic environment. The proposed algorithm is tested on the IEEE 33and 69-bus distribution systems. The results demonstrate the potential and effectiveness of the proposed algorithm in comparison with those of other evolutionary optimization methods. 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.