Lasius californicus

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Lasius californicus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Formicinae
Tribe: Lasiini
Genus: Lasius
Species: L. californicus
Binomial name
Lasius californicus
Wheeler, W.M., 1917

Lasius californicus casent0005398 profile 1.jpg

Lasius californicus casent0005398 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen labels

Colonies have been found under stones, but little is known about the biology of Lasius californicus.

At a Glance • Temporary parasite  



Keys including this Species


Southern California

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

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

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb


A seeming preference for mid-mountain locations, specimens have been collected in oak-pine-juniper woodland, montane chapparal and oak woodland.



Alate dates. Extreme dates for alates are June 27 and August 10. Dealate queens were collected on July 18 and August 8. Flights may typically begin in late June and extend into August. (Wing 1968)

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



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

  • californicus. Lasius (Acanthomyops) interjectus subsp. californicus Wheeler, W.M. 1917a: 531 (w.q.) U.S.A. Wing, 1968: 85 (m.). Combination in Acanthomyops: Creighton, 1950a: 430; in Lasius: Ward, 2005: 13. Subspecies of claviger: Creighton, 1950a: 430. Raised to species: Buren, 1950: 185. See also: Wing, 1968: 85.

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



Wing 1968 Acanthomyops figs. 55-63

Wing (1968) - Bears a resemblance to both interjectus and claviger; closely related to colei, but with SI 81-84. Petiolar scale with crest emarginate, usually distinctly so; sides straight and parallel or slightly converging dorsally. Standing body hairs simple to finely barbulate. Gula and clypeus each with 10 or more standing hairs. A few standing hairs on alitrunk flexed. Dorsum of gaster with standing hairs fairly numerous to numerous, irregularly distributed. Pubescence on scapes appressed to decumbent.

Pubescence on head dilute to moderately dense, that on gaster very dilute to moderate; body more or less shining. Color yellow to yellowish brown.


Wing (1968) - Similar to interjectus, but CI 98-103, with scapes shorter and more clavate. Penultimate segments of funiculus a little broader than long. Petiolar scale broad, its crest broadly emarginate, usually deeply so; its sides straight and converging dorsally, occasionally slightly convex. Basal margin of mandible usually without a denticle. Pubescence dilute to moderate; scapes with pubescence appressed to decumbent. Standing body hairs simple to finely barbulate. Wings only slightly infuscated basally.

Body color ranging from brown, with appendages lighter, to yellow throughout; feebly shining to highly glabrous.


Wing (1968) - Crest of petiolar scale moderately sharp to moderately blunt, feebly emarginate to straight; sides more or less straight and parallel. Length of longer hairs on crest and sides of scale and on clypeus less than 0.15 mm, those at posterior tip of gaster less than 0.25 mm. Standing hairs simple to finely barbulate, sparse; gula with 2 standing hairs located centrally. Pubescence on head moderate, on dorsum of gaster dilute.

Surface of mesocutum and mesoscutellum finely sculptured, covered with dilute pubescence. Body color brown.

Type Material

Type locality: Palmer's Canyon, San Gabriel Mts., near Clarmont, Los Angeles Co., California.

Location of types: The single female collected by F. Grinnell, August 10, 1909 is hereby designated as the lectotype. Of the original series of 11 cotypes, 4 workers remain. All of these specimens are in the Museum of Comparative Zoology.


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Dattilo W. et al. 2019. MEXICO ANTS: incidence and abundance along the Nearctic-Neotropical interface. Ecology
  • Des Lauriers J., and D. Ikeda. 2017. The ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of the San Gabriel Mountains of Southern California, USA with an annotated list. In: Reynolds R. E. (Ed.) Desert Studies Symposium. California State University Desert Studies Consortium, 342 pp. Pages 264-277.
  • Gregg, R.T. 1963. The Ants of Colorado.
  • Johnson, R.A. and P.S. Ward. 2002. Biogeography and endemism of ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Baja California, Mexico: a first overview. Journal of Biogeography 29:1009–1026/
  • MacGown, J. 2011. Ants of South Carolina (species list).
  • Mallis A. 1941. A list of the ants of California with notes on their habits and distribution. Bulletin of the Southern California Academy of Sciences 40: 61-100. 
  • Vásquez-Bolaños M. 2011. Lista de especies de hormigas (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) para México. Dugesiana 18: 95-133
  • Wheeler G. C., and J. Wheeler. 1986. The ants of Nevada. Los Angeles: Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, vii + 138 pp.
  • Wheeler W. M. 1917. The mountain ants of western North America. Proceedings of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences 52: 457-569.
  • Wheeler, G.C. and J. Wheeler. 1985. A checklist of Texas ants. Prairie Naturalist 17:49-64.
  • Wing M. W. 1968. Taxonomic revision of the Nearctic genus Acanthomyops (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Memoirs of the Cornell University Agricultural Experiment Station 405: 1-173.