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Formica colony ID

formica id field ants formica subsericea formica podzolica formica fusca group fusca group help question

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#1 Offline Mettcollsuss - Posted April 22 2018 - 4:56 PM


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So I have two colonies of what I thought were Formica subsericea.  But while looking through Antweb to get an ID for a different colony, I noticed that F. subsericea and F. podzolica look 99.999% the same. These colonies of mine were caught in an area where both are native, so I'm now wondering if my F. subsericea could actually be F. podzolica.


1. Location of collection: Delton, Michigan. Circle Pines Center.


2. Date of collection: Mid July

3.Habitat of collection: Small beach surrounded by an oak/pine forest. Here is the link to the spot where I caught them. Here's the link to the habitat I caught them in. It's not the exact place, but it's the exact same habitat.

4. Length: Queen is 13mm, workers won't hold still long enough for me to get a measurement.

5. Coloration, hue, pattern, and texture: Black, shiny. Queens have shiny black gaster with a couple greyish stripes.

6. Distinguishing characteristics (ie: one petiole node/two petiole nodes, length, and orientation of any spines or bumps on the thorax or waist, head shape, eye size, the shape of mandibles, number of antennal segments, etc.)

7. Anything else distinctive: Queens super shy and easily startled, workers highly aggressive and curious. 

8. Nest description: The mother colony was living under a stone in an abandoned fire pit on a beach. There was another colony (or maybe a satellite nest) nesting in the sand a dozen or so yards away.


9. Nuptial flight time and date: Late morning through early afternoon.

10. Post the clearest pictures possible:


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med_gallery_1963_974_65507.jpg med_gallery_1963_974_148729.jpg









#2 Offline Canadian anter - Posted April 22 2018 - 5:06 PM

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I'd say Formica subsericea still.

Visit us at www.canada-ant-colony.com !

#3 Offline Ants_Texas - Posted April 22 2018 - 6:09 PM


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Apart from the legs and naked pupae, I would've thought they were Camponotus pennsylvanicus. Perhaps I should spend more time identifying my local ants as practice. 

#4 Offline YsTheAnt - Posted April 23 2018 - 9:55 PM


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Apart from the legs and naked pupae, I would've thought they were Camponotus pennsylvanicus. Perhaps I should spend more time identifying my local ants as practice.

Biggest differences are:
- Gaster is larger in proportion to head and thorax than C. pennsylvanicus
- Head is not as wide or just as wide as thorax, unlike C. pennsylvanicus, which has a wider head than thorax
- Workers have two "humps" in their midsection (mesoma is the scientific term I think?), Camponotus Spp. only have one.

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Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: formica, id, field ants, formica subsericea, formica podzolica, formica fusca group, fusca group, help, question

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