Location: Tortilla Creek, Superstition Mtns, AZ
December 26, 2010 1:06 am
I photographed this ant on 12-25-2010 in the Superstition Mtns (~2,500’). I could not identify it in the Kaufman insect guide, so I bow in your general direction if you can make an identification.
Signature: Pat Livecchi
Your ant looks very much like several images of Carpenter Ants posted to BugGuide, including this image of Camponotus nearcticus from Texas, however, we are reluctant to try to provide an actual species or even subgenus identification. According to BugGuide, Ants in the genus Camponotus “are often called ‘carpenter ants’ because many species nest in dry or moist rotten wood, and some may nest in wooden houses, sheds, etc. However, in the East, C. americanus and C. castaneus nest in soil, and in the West, perhaps the majority of species (but usually not those in the subgenera Camponotus and Myrmentoma) nest in soil.” These large headed individuals belong to the caste of major workers according to a comment posted on BugGuide. The University of Missouri Extension website has a nice diagram of the various castes of Carpenter Ants.