Brazil Bugs #9 – Formiga hostil

I found this ant crawling over the blossoms of the Ixora shrubs on the grounds of my hotel in Campinas (São Paulo state). Normally I wouldn’t even try to identify a South American ant, but the individual quickly and easily keyed out in the recent revision of North American Formicidae to Formica nigra – apparently a very wide-ranging species!¹

¹ Seriously, I would welcome input from any myrmecophiles out there on the actual identity of this species.

As I started taking some photographs, she seemed to take note of my presence.
With each shot, she seemed to become increasingly more irritated.
Irritation soon gave way to outright hostility.
In short order, the meaning was all too clear – “Stay away from my flower!”
Copyright © Ted C. MacRae 2011

13 thoughts on “Brazil Bugs #9 – Formiga hostil

      • Those chitinous mandibles are quite expressive!

        This, btw, is the South Amercan species (not in your earlier key) Ectatomma brunneum, a synonym in your upcoming revision of Neotropical Formicidae of Formica grandebrunnea, I think.

        • Thanks for the ID, James – once Henry clued me in to Ectatomma and I looked at photos of the genus at AntWeb, I figured E. brunneum was the likely choice.

          Sure looks more nigrous than brunneus to me!

  1. Lovely shot of a lovely ant, Ted!

    I think Ectatomma is the photographer’s perfect ant. They are big, pretty, prone to sitting motionless, and they like to hang out in vegetation at a very comfortable eye-level.


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