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Queen Ant ID (Camponotus sp.) (Little Thomas Mountain, San Jacinto Mountains, CA) (6-21-2014)

ant id dspdrew camponotus little thomas mountain san jacinto mountains california queen

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16 replies to this topic

#1 Offline dspdrew - Posted June 21 2014 - 5:08 AM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

1. Location of collection:  Little Thomas Mountain, San Jacinto Mountains, California.
2. Date of collection:  5-3-2014.
3. Habitat of collection:  Pine/Oak Forest.
4. Length (from head to gaster):  11mm.
5. Color, hue, pattern and texture:  All black with dark brown legs; yellow hairs, numerous on cheeks.
6. Distinguishing characteristics:  No clypeal carina or notch.
7. Anything else distinctive: 
8. Nest description:

 

These are the best pictures I could get of this queen so far; she refuses to stop moving.

 

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Founding chamber

 

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#2 Offline dspdrew - Posted June 21 2014 - 9:51 AM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

I think I'm going to just keep calling this one C. quercicola for now, because even though it's only 11mm, it doesn't come close to keying out to anything else.



#3 Offline dspdrew - Posted December 12 2014 - 8:00 PM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Okay, since this queen has died, I got some microscope pictures of it finally.

 

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#4 Offline dspdrew - Posted December 12 2014 - 8:09 PM

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  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

I don't see how this can be anything but C. quercicola. Weird how small it is.



#5 Offline James C. Trager - Posted December 16 2014 - 5:30 AM

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Her small size could be related to her death, i.e., there was some sort of pathology that or abnormality that caused the small size and ultimately her mortality. Wish I could be less vague about this, but I've observed repeatedly that abnormal queens just don't survive or thrive.



#6 Offline dspdrew - Posted December 16 2014 - 5:43 AM

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  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Thanks. I'm assuming you agree on the ID?



#7 Offline James C. Trager - Posted December 16 2014 - 12:01 PM

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Well, now that you ask, I'm much more inclined to call this C. laevigatus, based on the pilosity.



#8 Offline Gregory2455 - Posted December 16 2014 - 12:46 PM

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On the topic of smaller ants, I found two very small Pogonomyrmex rugosus queens on my first anting trip. They were also the first ones to die in captivity. Is it possible these were Pogonomyrmex colei, and they died fast because they are parasitic?

 

(Pogonomyrmex colei are a workerless species of Pogonomyrmex that infiltrate a Pogonomyrmex rugosus nest as a worker and are tended to NEXT to the existing queen, making more alates for the next flight. Just for anyone who does not know.)



#9 Offline dspdrew - Posted December 16 2014 - 2:34 PM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Well, now that you ask, I'm much more inclined to call this C. laevigatus, based on the pilosity.

 

With yellow hairs, and no erect hairs on the scapes? It's not really that shiny either.



#10 Offline AntsAreUs - Posted December 16 2014 - 6:28 PM

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On the topic of smaller ants, I found two very small Pogonomyrmex rugosus queens on my first anting trip. They were also the first ones to die in captivity. Is it possible these were Pogonomyrmex colei, and they died fast because they are parasitic?

 

(Pogonomyrmex colei are a workerless species of Pogonomyrmex that infiltrate a Pogonomyrmex rugosus nest as a worker and are tended to NEXT to the existing queen, making more alates for the next flight. Just for anyone who does not know.)

It is definitely Camponotus.



#11 Offline Gregory2455 - Posted December 16 2014 - 6:43 PM

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It is definitely Camponotus.

I was talking about different ants. This is obviously Camponotus.


Edited by Gregory2455, December 16 2014 - 6:43 PM.


#12 Offline James C. Trager - Posted December 17 2014 - 6:53 AM

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Since we have no workers, and the queen may be aberrant, no way to be sure. Could even be something not previously known.
Definitely worth preserving and labeling for deposit in a museum ant collection. I would suggest the one in San Francisco, at Cal. Acad. Sci.



#13 Offline dspdrew - Posted April 5 2018 - 11:57 PM

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  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Now that I know a lot more about, and have kept many C. quercicola queens, this is NOT C. quercicola. I think it might have a slight clypeal carina, and is probably C. vicinus. I'm not sure how it could be C. laevigatus with yellow hairs. The gleaming white hair is the most obvious feature of them. The hairs standing straight out on the scapes is pretty obvious as well.

 

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#14 Offline LC3 - Posted April 6 2018 - 7:38 AM

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Just a guess but how about Camponotus mina?

Colonies

Spoiler

 

 


#15 Offline dspdrew - Posted April 4 2019 - 11:50 PM

dspdrew
  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Well it looks like I found more queens of this exact same species again, off Ortega Highway this time. I found a whole bunch of them, but didn't realize they were this same species until now. I wish I would have grabbed one of the dead ones I saw so I could pin it up and try to ID it again.

 

Anyway, here are some pictures of one of these new queens.

 

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Here's one of their founding chambers.

 

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#16 Offline nurbs - Posted April 5 2019 - 12:27 AM

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When I was there that same night, my initial thought was C. maritimus. The features match exactly, but they are a tad smaller but also behave differently. These were digging chambers and also like to "play dead".


Instagram:

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http://www.formicult...onotus-us-ca02/

 

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#17 Offline dspdrew - Posted April 5 2019 - 12:31 AM

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  • LocationSanta Ana, CA

Like I mentioned originally, I still can't see a clypeal carina OR notch. I don't even know what subgenus these are... :thinking:







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: ant id, dspdrew, camponotus, little thomas mountain, san jacinto mountains, california, queen

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