Formica morsei

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Formica morsei
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Formicinae
Tribe: Formicini
Genus: Formica
Species group: microgyna
Species: F. morsei
Binomial name
Formica morsei
Wheeler, W.M., 1906



Type Specimen Label

Little is known concerning the biology of this species. It was originally collected in a deciduous forest near Boston, Massachusetts, but unfortunately the type locality has been converted to a shopping mall (S. Cover, pers. comm.). It is known from limited material including a few workers from the Adirondack Mountains, New York (collected by Gary Alpert).

At a Glance • Temporary parasite  



The head of the worker of this species is wider than long, and rounded posteriorly. There only a few erect hairs scattered on the dorsum of the head, on the ventral surface of the head, on the dorsum of the mesosoma, and on the gaster. Many hairs are blunt-tipped, but are not spatulate. The entire ant is a yellowish brown color.

It is difficult to relate this ant to other species and it is probably a member of the microgyna group which both Wheeler (1906, 1913) and Creighton (1950) supported. It would not be likely to confuse this species with any others, based on the shape of the head, and color.

Keys including this Species


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


This species is likely to be a temporary parasite of another species of Formica, but its host is unknown.




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

  • morsei. Formica morsei Wheeler, W.M. 1906a: 39, pl. 4, fig. 1 (w.) U.S.A.
    • Status as species: Wheeler, W.M. 1906b: 19; Wheeler, W.M. 1913f: 480 (redescription); Creighton, 1950a: 504; Smith, D.R. 1979: 1462; Bolton, 1995b: 199; Ellison, et al. 2012: 162.

Type Material



  • Wheeler, W. M. 1906. New ants from New England. Psyche (Camb.) 13: 38-41 (page 39, pl. 4, fig. 1 worker described)
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1913. A revision of the ants of the genus Formica (Linné) Mayr. Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. 53: 379-565 (page 480, see also)

References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Wheeler W. M. 1906. New ants from New England. Psyche (Cambridge) 13: 38-41