Camponotus morosus

AntWiki: The Ants --- Online
Camponotus morosus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Formicinae
Tribe: Camponotini
Genus: Camponotus
Species: C. morosus
Binomial name
Camponotus morosus
(Smith, F., 1858)

Camponotus morosus casent0249339 p 1 high.jpg

Camponotus morosus casent0249339 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

Camponotus morosus can be found living in mixed nests with the ant Solenopsis gayi. Believed to be a parabiotic association, the relationship between these two ants was studied and it was found S. gayi workers were tolerant of all C. morosus workers. C. morosus workers were aggressive to most other ants except their own nestmates and the S. gayi workers they lived with. (Errard et al. 2003)



Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: -25° to -40.421°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Neotropical Region: Argentina, Chile (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Countries Occupied

Number of countries occupied by this species based on AntWiki Regional Taxon Lists. In general, fewer countries occupied indicates a narrower range, while more countries indicates a more widespread species.

Estimated Abundance

Relative abundance based on number of AntMaps records per species (this species within the purple bar). Fewer records (to the left) indicates a less abundant/encountered species while more records (to the right) indicates more abundant/encountered species.


This species is monogynous (Errard et al. 2003).



The diet was studied by Grez et al. in 1986, in a sclerophyllous scrub environment through the interception of forage workers. It was determined that 40.91% of the items taken to the nest correspond to insects (of these 90.8 dead and 9.2 live insects) behaving mainly as a scavenger. The second item in importance corresponds to bird and reptile feces (35.71%), followed by items of plant origin (22.8%). Adult ants only require sugars for their general metabolism, not their larvae and queen, which are in active growth and reproduction, respectively. In this way, the large number of insects and faeces can be explained, which are very rich in nitrogen, a constituent and essential element for proteins. Additionally, C. morosus has been observed foraging on carcasses of cow (Bos taurus), transporting in this case remains of cadaveric insect pupae, and pieces of skin and hair, also attending to aphids (Aphididae), mealybugs (Pseudococcidae) and scale insects ( Coccidae) (Cerpa 2017 Pers. Obs.).



Images from AntWeb

Camponotus morosus casent0249340 h 1 high.jpgCamponotus morosus casent0249340 p 1 high.jpgCamponotus morosus casent0249340 d 1 high.jpgCamponotus morosus casent0249340 l 1 high.jpg
Worker. Specimen code casent0249340. Photographer Will Ericson, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by PSWC, Philip S. Ward Collection.
Camponotus morosus casent0903651 h 1 high.jpgCamponotus morosus casent0903651 p 1 high.jpgCamponotus morosus casent0903651 d 1 high.jpgCamponotus morosus casent0903651 l 1 high.jpg
Holotype of Camponotus morosusWorker. Specimen code casent0903651. Photographer Will Ericson, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by NHMUK, London, UK.


The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's Online Catalogue of the Ants of the World.

  • morosus. Formica morosa Smith, F. 1858b: 50 (w.) CHILE.
    • Type-material: holotype (?) worker.
    • [Note: no indication of number of specimens is given.]
    • Type-locality: Chile: (no further data).
    • Type-depository: BMNH.
    • Mayr, 1865: 32 (s.).
    • Combination in Camponotus: Mayr, 1862: 665;
    • combination in C. (Tanaemyrmex): Emery, 1925b: 78.
    • Subspecies of rubripes: Forel, 1886f: 144, 160.
    • Junior synonym of distinguendus: Dalla Torre, 1893: 228.
    • Subspecies of distinguendus: Emery, 1895d: 214 (in text); Emery, 1895i: 18; Emery, 1896d 375 (in list); Emery, 1903: 69 (in text); Emery, 1906c: 191; Santschi, 1916e: 396; Emery, 1925b: 78; Donisthorpe, 1933c: 538; Goetsch & Menozzi, 1935: 101; Kusnezov, 1952d: 209.
    • Status as species: Mayr, 1862: 665; Mayr, 1863: 400; Roger, 1863b: 5; Mayr, 1865: 32; Mayr, 1886c: 356; Menozzi, 1935c: 329; Kempf, 1970a: 33; Kempf, 1972a: 69; Snelling, R.R. & Hunt, 1976: 120; Bolton, 1995b: 112.
    • Distribution: Argentina, Chile.



  • Cantone S. 2017. Winged Ants, The Male, Dichotomous key to genera of winged male ants in the World, Behavioral ecology of mating flight (self-published).
  • Dalla Torre, K. W. von. 1893. Catalogus Hymenopterorum hucusque descriptorum systematicus et synonymicus. Vol. 7. Formicidae (Heterogyna). Leipzig: W. Engelmann, 289 pp. (page 228, Junior synonym of distinguendus)
  • Emery, C. 1895k. Deuxième note sur les fourmis du Chili. Actes Soc. Sci. Chili 5: 10-18 (page 18, Revived from synonymy as variety/subspecies of distinguendus)
  • Emery, C. 1906c [1905]. Studi sulle formiche della fauna neotropica. XXVI. Bull. Soc. Entomol. Ital. 37: 107-194 (page 191, Revived from synonymy as variety/subspecies of distinguendus)
  • Emery, C. 1925d. Hymenoptera. Fam. Formicidae. Subfam. Formicinae. Genera Insectorum 183: 1-302 (page 78, Combination in C. (Tanaemyrmex))
  • Errard, C., J. Ipinza Regla, and A. Hefetz. 2003. Interspecific recognition in Chilean parabiotic ant species. Insectes Sociaux. 50:268-273.
  • Forel, A. 1886h. Études myrmécologiques en 1886. Ann. Soc. Entomol. Belg. 30: 131-215 (page 144, Race of rubripes)
  • Grez, A. A., Simonetti, J. A., & Ipinza-Regla, J. (1986). Hábitos alimenticios de Camponotus morosus (Smith, 1858)(Hymenoptera: formicidae) en chile central. Revista Chilena de Entomología, 13, 51-54.
  • Ipinza Regla, J., Galano, A., & Morales, M. A. (1993). Ambito de hogar de Camponotus morosus Smith, 1858 (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). Sociedad Chilena de Entomologia (Chile)..
  • Ipinza-Regla, J., A. M. Fernandez, M. A. Morales, and J. E. Araya. 2017. Hermetism between Camponotus morosus Smith and Linepithema humile Mayr (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Gayana. 81:22-27. doi:10.4067/S0717-65382017000100022
  • Kempf, W. W. 1972b. Catálogo abreviado das formigas da regia~o Neotropical. Stud. Entomol. 15: 3-344 (page 69, Revived status as species)
  • Lenoir, A., P. D’Ettorre, P., Errard, C., Hefetz, A. 2001. Chemical ecology and social parasitism in ants. Annual Review of Entomology 46: 573–599.
  • Mayr, G. 1862. Myrmecologische Studien. Verh. K-K. Zool.-Bot. Ges. Wien 12: 649-776 (page 665, Combination in Camponotus)
  • Mayr, G. 1865. Formicidae. In: Reise der Österreichischen Fregatte "Novara" um die Erde in den Jahren 1857, 1858, 1859. Zoologischer Theil. Bd. II. Abt. 1. Wien: K. Gerold's Sohn, 119 pp. (page 32, soldier described)
  • Menozzi, C. 1935c. Fauna Chilensis. II. (Nach Sammlungen von W. Goetsch). Le formiche del Cile. Zool. Jahrb. Abt. Syst. Ökol. Geogr. Tiere 67: 319-336 (page 329, Revived status as species)
  • Santschi, F. 1916e. Formicides sudaméricains nouveaux ou peu connus. Physis (B. Aires) 2: 365-399 (page 396, Revived from synonymy as variety/subspecies of distinguendus)
  • Segura, B., & Brown, B. V. (2014). Inter-colony aggression of Camponotus morosus attractive to phorid flies. Journal of the Kansas Entomological Society, 87(1), 84-88.
  • Smith, F. 1858b. Catalogue of hymenopterous insects in the collection of the British Museum. Part VI. Formicidae. London: British Museum, 216 pp. (page 50, worker described)
  • Snelling, R. R.; Hunt, J. H. 1975. The ants of Chile (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Rev. Chil. Entomol. 9: 63-129 (page 120, Revived status as species)

References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Cepeda-Pizarro J., J. Pizarro-Araya, and C. Bravo-Naranjo. 2018. The assemblage of epigean ants (Formicidae) inhabiting altered patches found in a latitudinal transect of coastal matorral of semiarid Chile. IDESIA (Chile) 36(2): 193-201.
  • Cuezzo, F. 1998. Formicidae. Chapter 42 in Morrone J.J., and S. Coscaron (dirs) Biodiversidad de artropodos argentinos: una perspectiva biotaxonomica Ediciones Sur, La Plata. Pages 452-462.
  • Emery C. 1906. Studi sulle formiche della fauna neotropica. XXVI. Bullettino della Società Entomologica Italiana 37: 107-194.
  • Goetsch W. and C. Menozzi. 1935. Die Ameisen Chiles. Konowia 14: 94-102
  • Goetsch, W., and C. Menozzi. "Die Ameisen Chiles." Konowia 14 (1935): 94-102.
  • Ipinza-Regla J. H., R. Covarrubias Berrios, and R. Fueyo Ladron de Guevara. 1983. Distribucion altitudinal de Formicidae en Los Andes de Chile Central. Folia Entomologica Mexicana 55: 103-128.
  • Ipinza-Regla J., L. Castro, R. Eissemann, and M. A. Morales. 2010. Factors Influencing the Distribution of Nests of the Argentine Ant Linepithema humile Mayr (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), in a Foothills Ecosystem of the Central Zone of Chile. Neotropical Entomology 39(5):686-690.
  • Kempf W. W. 1970. Catálogo das formigas do Chile. Papeis Avulsos de Zoologia (São Paulo) 23: 17-43.
  • Kusnezov N. 1952. El género Camponotus en la Argentina (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). Acta Zoologica Lilloana 12: 183-252.
  • Kusnezov N. 1953. La fauna mirmecológica de Bolivia. Folia Universitaria. Cochabamba 6: 211-229.
  • Menozzi C. 1935. Fauna Chilensis. II. (Nach Sammlungen von W. Goetsch). Le formiche del Cile. Zoologische Jahrbücher. Abteilung für Systematik, Ökologie und Geographie der Tiere. 67: 319-336.
  • Snelling R. R., and J. H. Hunt. 1975. The ants of Chile (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) Revista Chilena de Entomología 9: 63-129.