Formica coloradensis

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Formica coloradensis
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Formicinae
Tribe: Formicini
Genus: Formica
Species group: rufa
Species: F. coloradensis
Binomial name
Formica coloradensis
Creighton, 1940

Formica coloradensis casent0104875 profile 1.jpg

Formica coloradensis casent0104875 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen labels

This ant nests under logs and stumps or stones, or simply in mounds with thatching. Reproductives were found in nests in July, dealate females were collected in July and August. (Mackay and Mackay 2002)


The presence of bristly, short, erect hairs scattered over all surfaces of the tibiae, separate this species from most of the others in the rufa group. Formica coloradensis has a less protruding clypeus, with shallow tentorial pits. The minor worker has a red head, mesosoma and legs. (Mackay and Mackay 2002)

Keys including this Species


United States: Idaho, Utah, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico.

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Nearctic Region: United States (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb


For New Mexico (Mackay and Mackay 2002): Higher elevation forests (1600 - 3500 meters), oak forests, occasionally in meadows or near aspen-spruce forests.


Nest site selected in areas of moderate to heavy cover. Nest begun in or under a log or stump. Extensive use made of thatching. The finished nest considerably influenced by the size of the object in which it was started but, when this is small, a dome shaped nest results (Creighton, 1940)



The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's New General Catalogue, a catalogue of the world's ants.

  • coloradensis. Formica rufa subsp. coloradensis Creighton, 1940a: 1, fig. 1 (w.q.) U.S.A. [First available use of Formica truncicola subsp. integroides var. coloradensis Wheeler, W.M. 1913f: 440; unavailable name.] Subspecies of integroides: Creighton, 1950a: 489. Raised to species: Wheeler, G.C. & Wheeler, J. 1986g: 81; Mackay, Lowrie, et al. 1988: 111 (in key).



  • Creighton, W. S. 1940a. A revision of the North American variants of the ant Formica rufa. Am. Mus. Novit. 1055: 1-10 PDF
  • Creighton, W. S. 1950a. The ants of North America. Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. 104: 1-585 (page 489, subspecies of integroides)
  • MacKay, W. P.; Lowrie, D.; Fisher, A.; MacKay, E. E.; Barnes, F.; Lowrie, D. 1988. The ants of Los Alamos County, New Mexico (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Pp. 79-131 in: Trager, J. C. (ed.) Advances in myrmecology. Leiden: E. J. Brill, xxvii + 551 pp. (page 111, Raised to species (in key))
  • Mackay, W. P. and E. Mackay. 2002. The ants of New Mexico (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Edwin Mellen Press, Lewiston, NY.
  • Wheeler, G. C.; Wheeler, J. 1986g. The ants of Nevada. Los Angeles: Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, vii + 138 pp. (page 81, raised to species)
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1913i. A revision of the ants of the genus Formica (Linné) Mayr. Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. 53: 379-565 (page 440, First available use of Formica trunicola subsp. integroides var. coloradensis: unavailable name.)