DISTRIBUTION-Formica obscuripes

Aweme, Birds Hill Provincial Park, Carberry, Clear Lake, Giroux, Lake Minnewasta,Langruth, Lewis, Miami, Morden, Portage la Prairie, Richer, Riding Mountain National Park, St. Malo, Sandilands Provincial Forest, Spruce Woods Provincial Park, Stony Mountain, Treesbank
(Wheeler et al., 1989)


Key characteristics to the species of Formica rufa Group of Manitoba (Jeff Shaddock (unpublished) and adapted from Wheeler and Wheeler (1963))

1. Crest of petiole much thinner; in profile the anterior face slopes rearward to the crest even when the latter is blunt; gastric pubescence usually appressed and never reflected
2. Scapes usually without erect hairs, but if erect hairs are present then body hairs are not of uniform length
3. Petiolar scale seen from behind with the crest convex or angularly produced upward in the middle, the sides of the scale tapering inward from crest to peduncle
4. Clypeal fossae shallow and scarcely pit like, the edge of the clypeus in front of the fossae very broadly united to the base of the lobe and not forming a distinct curve with it; clypeus not box-like
5. Erect hairs on middle and hind tibiae usually abundant and covering all surfaces
6. Erect hairs on thorax rather than unequal in length, cephalic hairs only a little less abundant and not much longer than those on thorax
7. Head (mandible excluded) of major as broad as long or broader than long

  • Photo Credit:Erin Prado © AntWeb 2002 - 2013
  • Photo Credit:Erin Prado © AntWeb 2002 - 2013

  • Taxonomic Classification

          Phylum: Arthropoda
          Subphylum: Hexapoda
               Class: Insecta
               Subclass: Pterygota
               Infraclass: Neoptera
                     Order: Hymenoptera
                     Suborder: Apocrita
                     Infraorder: Aculeata
                              Superfamily: Vespoidea
                              Family: Formicidae
                              Subfamily: Formicinae
                              Tribe: Formicini
                                 Genus: Formica
                                 Species: Formica obscuripes

    Specific Biology

    Broad habitat preferences, an incomplete list includes: sagebrush steppe, prairie, hardwood forest, and mixed coniferous forest. This species as currently conceived, besides have broad habitat preferences, has high variability in coloration, from mostly red (black gaster) to almost completely infuscate black (head orange). Like many other Formica, F. obscuripes primarily tends hemipterans on vegetation.

    Source: Ant Web