Formica altipetens

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Formica altipetens
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Formicinae
Tribe: Formicini
Genus: Formica
Species: F. altipetens
Binomial name
Formica altipetens
Wheeler, W.M., 1913

Formica altipetens casent0005360 profile 1.jpg

Formica altipetens casent0005360 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen labels

This ant nests in the soil with entrances surrounded by a small mound, or under stones and logs, sometimes covered with detritus. Nest populations are large, and the ants are very aggressive when the nest is disturbed. (Mackay and Mackay 2002)

Identification

The metasternal process of the worker (and female) is well developed and surrounded by hairs. The eyes are large, the maximum diameter is about equal to the distance from the anterior border of the eye to the insertion of the mandible. There is usually a pair of erect hairs on the ventral surface of the head, a few hairs on the vertex, and several blunt-tipped hairs on the propodeum, the mesopleuron is usually without erect hairs, as are the cheeks and posterior lateral corners. (Mackay and Mackay 2002)

Keys including this Species

Distribution

Canada: Alberta. United States: Montana south to New Mexico, west to California.

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Nearctic Region: Canada, United States (type locality).
Neotropical Region: Mexico.


Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Habitat

In New Mexico (Mackay and Mackay 2002): Forested and open areas, ranging from meadows, pinyon-pine, ponderosa pines, Gamble oak forests to spruce forests.

Biology

For New Mexico (Mackay and Mackay 2002): Reproductives were found in nests in June and August, flights occurred during the first part of July (sexuals are attracted to lights). It is enslaved by Formica rubicunda, Formica wheeleri and Polyergus breviceps.

Flight Period

X X
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Castes

Nomenclature

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

  • altipetens. Formica cinerea var. altipetens Wheeler, W.M. 1913f: 399 (diagnosis in key) (w.) U.S.A. [Formica cinerea subsp. cinerea var. altipetens Wheeler, W.M. 1913f: 523 (w.q.m.); unavailable name.] Wheeler, G.C. & Wheeler, J. 1953c: 160 (l.). Subspecies of cinerea: Wheeler, W.M. 1917a: 550; Wheeler, G.C. & Wheeler, E.W. 1944: 259. Raised to species: Creighton, 1950a: 531. See also: Francoeur, 1973: 52.

Unless otherwise noted the text for the remainder of this section is reported from the publication that includes the original description.

Description

Francoeur 1973. Figures 39-55.

References

  • Creighton, W. S. 1950a. The ants of North America. Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. 104: 1-585 (page 531, raised to species)
  • Francoeur, A. 1973. Révision taxonomique des espèces néarctiques du groupe fusca, genre Formica (Formicidae, Hymenoptera). Mém. Soc. Entomol. Qué. 3: 1-316 (page 52, see also)
  • Mackay, W. P. and E. Mackay. 2002. The ants of New Mexico (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Edwin Mellen Press, Lewiston, NY.
  • Torres, C.W., Tsutsui, N.D. 2016. The effect of social parasitism by Polyergus breviceps on the nestmate recognition system of its host, Formica altipetens. PLoS ONE 11(2): e0147498 (doi:10.1371/ journal.pone.0147498).
  • Wheeler, G. C.; Wheeler, E. W. 1944. The ants of North Dakota. N. D. Hist. Q. 11: 231-271 (page 259, Variety/subspecies of cinerea)
  • Wheeler, G. C.; Wheeler, J. 1953c. The ant larvae of the subfamily Formicinae. Ann. Entomol. Soc. Am. 46: 126-171 (page 160, larva described)
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1913i. A revision of the ants of the genus Formica (Linné) Mayr. Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. 53: 379-565 (page 399, (diagnosis in key) worker described; page 523, Formica cinerea subsp. cinerea var. altipetens; unavailable name: worker, queen, male described)
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1917a. The mountain ants of western North America. Proc. Am. Acad. Arts Sci. 52: 457-569 (page 550, Variety/subspecies of cinerea)

References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Allred D. M. 1982. Ants of Utah. The Great Basin Naturalist 42: 415-511.
  • Allred, D.M. 1982. The ants of Utah. Great Basin Naturalist 42:415-511.
  • Borchert, H.F. and N.L. Anderson. 1973. The Ants of the Bearpaw Mountains of Montana (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Journal of the Kansas Entomological Society 46(2):200-224
  • Cole A. C., Jr. 1942. The ants of Utah. American Midland Naturalist 28: 358-388.
  • Cole A. C., Jr. 1954. Studies of New Mexico ants. XI. The genus Formica with a description of a new species (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Journal of the Tennessee Academy of Science 29: 163-167.
  • Cole, A.C. 1936. An annotated list of the ants of Idaho (Hymenoptera; Formicidae). Canadian Entomologist 68(2):34-39
  • Downing H., and J. Clark. 2018. Ant biodiversity in the Northern Black Hills, South Dakota (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). Journal of the Kansas Entomological Society 91(2): 119-132.
  • Francoeur. A. 1973. Revision taxonomique des especes nearctiques du group fusca, genre Formica. Memoires de la Societe Entomologique du Quebec 3: 1-316.
  • Glasier J. R. N., J. H. Acorn, S. E. Nielsen, and H. Proctor. 2013. Ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of Alberta: A key to species based primarily on the worker caste. Canadian Journal of Arthropod Identification 22: 1-104.
  • Glasier J. R. N., S. Nielsen, J. H. Acorn, L. H. Borysenko, and T. Radtke. 2016. A checklist of ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of Saskatchewan. The Canadian Field-Naturalist 130(1): 40-48.
  • Gregg, R.T. 1963. The Ants of Colorado.
  • Johnson R. Personnal Database. Accessed on February 5th 2014 at http://www.asu.edu/clas/sirgtools/resources.htm
  • La Rivers I. 1968. A first listing of the ants of Nevada. Biological Society of Nevada, Occasional Papers 17: 1-12.
  • Mackay W. P., and E. E. Mackay. 2002. The ants of New Mexico (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Lewiston, New York: Edwin Mellen Press, 400 pp.
  • Mackay, W., D. Lowrie, A. Fisher, E. Mackay, F. Barnes and D. Lowrie. 1988. The ants of Los Alamos County, New Mexico (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). pages 79-131 in J.C. Trager, editor, Advances in Myrmecololgy.
  • Mackay, W.P. and E. Mackay. XXXX. The Ants of New Mexico
  • Rees D. M., and A. W. Grundmann. 1940. A preliminary list of the ants of Utah. Bulletin of the University of Utah, 31(5): 1-12.
  • Rojas Fernandez P. 2010. Capítulo 24. Hormigas (Insecta: Hymenoptera: Formicidae). In: Diversidad Biológica de Veracruz. Volumen Invertebrados. CONABIO-Gobierno del Estado de Veracruz.
  • Vásquez-Bolaños M. 2011. Lista de especies de hormigas (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) para México. Dugesiana 18: 95-133
  • Wheeler G. C., and E. W. Wheeler. 1944. Ants of North Dakota. North Dakota Historical Quarterly 11:231-271.
  • Wheeler, G.C. and J. Wheeler. 1963. Ants of North Dakota
  • Wheeler, G.C. and J. Wheeler. 1988. A checklist of the ants of Montana. Psyche 95:101-114
  • Wheeler, G.C. and J. Wheeler. 1988. A checklist of the ants of Wyoming. Insecta Mundi 2(3&4):230-239