1. Location (on a map) of collection: In my backyard in Benson Arizona (early evening around 4:30 pm at 65 degrees F. Low pressure system with light rain, elevation of 3,586')
2. Date of collection: 01/09/18
3. Habitat of collection: Desert with Flat ground, clay with small rock. Hard ground, lack of vegetation, with Mesquite trees nearby and Russian thistle
4. Length (from head to gaster): almost 5mm (see attached photo)
5. Color, hue, pattern and texture: 2 tone, redish orange with dark gaster, almost black. rear set of legs dark brown to almost black. Over all shiny body and shiny gaster (whole gaster shiny, not just shiny at the segment lines) with small white hairs covering most of the gaster. Gaster has faint lighter bands after each segment.
6. Distinguishing characteristics: One petiole node, triangular in shape and forward facing, no spines seen. profile of thorax has 2 gradual "humps". head is a soft sided triangle shape with oval semi large eyes. 12 segments on the antennae. Ocelli on top of head.
7. Distinguishing behavior: non aggressive, (could be due to cold weather) found entering the nest of a very tiny unknown (to me) species that is known to raid my kitchen every summer that I call the sugar ants. Tiny, less than 1mm black ants. witch the species in question would take seeds and food from along with eggs and larva. 4 nests were found of the species in question and all 4 had the tiny black ants along with them. when the black ants were disturbed the species in question would run around frantically and shake. I experienced one bite at a nest at the base of a young mesquite tree, but no sting, my phone was how ever covered in the tiny black ants.
8. Nest description: Out of the 4 nests I found in my yard all but one were on bare hard ground, the nest was just a hole with a few small rocks and pebbles around along with "trash piles". when looking in the "trash" i found several severed heads of very well known aggressive species of ants, Trap jaws, Red and Black Harvesters, Black Carpenters, and a VERY large yellow colored ant at about 8mm to 10 in size. the 4th nest was at the base of a young mesquite tree, the nest had no real shape to the mound, just a hole in loose dirt. All 4 nests had tiny tiny black ants running in and out, and they too had there own nest with in 6 to 8 inches from the species in question's nest.
Sorry for the lack of quality... All I have is a phone to take the photos with.