Red wood ant Formica rufa, copyright Richard Bartz.

Belongs within: Formicinae.

Formica, wood ants, is a genus of relatively large ants found primarily in northern temperate regions.

Characters (from Wheeler & Wheeler 1990): Larger ants (2.5–9 mm long); antenna with twelve segments; frontal carina prominent, its lateral margin slightly raised; ocelli conspicuous; maxillary palp with six segments; propodeal spiracle a narrow slit.

<==Formica Linnaeus 1758 B03 [incl. Neoformica WW90, Raptiformica WW90]
    |--F. rufa group WW90
    |    |--*F. rufa Linnaeus 1758 B03, L58 [incl. F. dorsata L1802a, F. maxima L1802a]
    |    |    |--F. r. rufa HB69
    |    |    `--F. r. rufopratensis HB69
    |    |--F. calviceps Cole 1954 WW90
    |    |--F. densiventris [incl. F. rasilis] WW90
    |    |--F. haemorrhoidalis Latreille 1802 WW90, L1802a (see below for synonymy)
    |    |--F. integroides WW90
    |    `--F. microgyna WW90
    |--F. fusca group WW90
    |    |--F. fusca Linnaeus 1758 S-SS06 [incl. F. flavipes L1802a, F. libera L1802a]
    |    `--F. xerophila WW90
    |--F. neogagates group WW90
    |    |--F. bradleyi [=F. (Raptiformica) bradleyi] WW90
    |    |--F. lasioides [=F. (Proformica) lasioides] WW90
    |    |--F. limata [=F. (Proformica) limata] WW90
    |    |--F. manni [=F. (Raptiformica) manni] WW90
    |    |--F. neogagates [=F. (Proformica) neogagates] WW90
    |    |--F. oregonensis [=F. (Raptiformica) oregonensis] WW90
    |    `--F. perpilosa [=F. (Raptiformica) perpilosa] WW90
    |--F. pallidefulva group WW90
    |    |--F. archboldi [=F. (Neoformica) arhboldi] WW90
    |    |--F. pallidefulva Latreille 1802 L1802a [=F. (Neoformica) pallidefulva WW90]
    |    `--F. schaufussi [=F. (Neoformica) schaufussi] WW90
    `--F. sanguinea group WW90
         |--F. sanguinea Latr. 1798 B03
         `--F. subnuda [=F. sanguinea subnuda] WW90

Formica incertae sedis:
  F. abdominalis Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. aegyptiaca L1802a
  F. aethiops Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. albipennis Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. amyoti Le Guillou 1841 TB85
  F. analis L1802a
  F. antiguensis Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. apicalis Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. aquilonia WD04
  F. arenaria L1802a
  F. argentea ES12
  F. armigera Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. aserva ES12
  F. aurulenta Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. badia Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. balcanica CM07
  F. bicolor Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. bidens Linnaeus 1758 L58
  F. binodis L1802a
  F. biscutata L1802a
  F. bispinosa Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. bituberculata Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. brunnea L1802a
  F. caespitum Linnaeus 1758 L58
  F. candida Smith 1878 (n. d.) B03
  F. capitata L1802a
  F. carbonaria Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. castanea Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. cephalotes Linnaeus 1758 L58 [incl. F. grossa L1802a, F. magna L1802a]
  F. chelifera Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. cinerea MS01
  F. calvata L1802b
  F. coeca Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. conica Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. cunicularia [incl. F. media, F. obsoleta] L1802a
  F. curiosa ES12
  F. curvidentata Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. cylindrica Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. decipiens ES12
  F. depressa Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. didyma L1802a
  F. elongata L1802a
  F. emarginata L1802a
  F. erytrocephala L1802a
  F. exsecta MS01
    |--F. e. exsecta MS01
    `--F. e. prebilabris MS01
  F. exsectoides MC05
  F. ferruginea L1802a
  F. flava L1802a
  F. flavescens L1802a
  F. flavicornis Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. foetens L1802a
  F. foetida Linnaeus 1758 L58
  F. fugax L1802a
  F. fuscoptera L1802a
  F. gagates Latr. 1798 B03 [incl. F. gagates var. transcaucasica MS01]
  F. hamata Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. hastata Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. herculeana Linnaeus 1758 L58
  F. hystrix Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. incerta ES12
  F. inequalis Lowne 1865 TB85
  F. lateralis Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. lemani L2002
  F. longinoda Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. longipes Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. lugubris CM07
  F. maxillosa L1802a
  F. melanogastes Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. microcephala L1802a
  F. militaris L1802a
  F. minuta Lowne 1865 TB85
  F. moki BS06
  F. molestans Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. montana ES12
  F. nasuta MS01
    |--F. n. nasuta MS01
    `--F. n. mongolica Emery in Mocsáry & Szépligeti 1901 MS01
  F. nigra Linnaeus 1758 L58 [incl. F. atra L1802a]
  F. nodosa Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. obsoleta Linnaeus 1758 L58
  F. omnivora Linnaeus 1758 L58
  F. pallidelutea Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. pallipes Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. pensylvanica L1802a
  F. picipes Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. polyctena H79
  F. pratensis HB69 [=F. rufa var. pratensis MS01]
  F. pressilabris ES12
  F. pubescens [incl. F. vaga] L1802a
  F. puberula ES12
  F. purpurescens Lowne 1865 TB85
  F. pusilla [incl. F. nana Latreille 1802] L1802a
  F. quadridens L1802a
  F. quadripunctata L1802a
  F. rostrata L1802a
  F. rubida Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. rubiginosa Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. rubra Linnaeus 1758 L58
  F. rubripes Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. rufibarbis Fabr. 1793 B03 (see below for synonymy)
  F. rufipes L1802a
  F. saccharivora Linnaeus 1758 L58
  F. salomonis Linnaeus 1758 L58
  F. sexdens Linnaeus 1758 L58
  F. sexguttata Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. spininoda Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. structor L1802a
  F. subintegra ES12
  F. subpolita ES12
  F. subsericea ES12
  F. subterranea L1802a
  F. sylvatica Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. tarsata Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. truncicola Nyl. 1847 B03
  F. truncorum ES12
  F. tuberculata Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. tuberosa L1802a
  F. unifasciata L1802a
  F. unispinosa Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. uralensis MS01
  F. vagans Latreille 1802 L1802a
  F. viatica L1802a
  F. vinculans ES12

Formica haemorrhoidalis Latreille 1802 WW90, L1802a [=F. integra haemorrhoidalis WW90; incl. F. obscuripes WW90, F. integra tahoensis WW90]

Formica rufibarbis Fabr. 1793 B03 [=F. fusca rufibarbis MS01; incl. F. fusca clara MS01, F. rufibarbis var. clara B03, F. defensor Smith 1878 B03, F. fraterna Smith 1878 B03, F. fusca rufibarbis var. fuscorufibarbis MS01]

*Type species of generic name indicated


[B03] Bingham, C. T. 1903. The Fauna of British India, including Ceylon and Burma. Hymenoptera vol. 2. Ants and Cuckoo-Wasps. Taylor and Francis: London.

[BS06] Brady, S. G., T. R. Schultz, B. L. Fisher & P. S. Ward. 2006. Evaluating alternative hypotheses for the early evolution and diversification of ants. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA 103 (48): 18172–18177.

[CM07] Cokendolpher, J. C., & P. G. Mitov. 2007. Natural enemies. In: Pinto-da-Rocha, R., G. Machado & G. Giribet (eds) Harvestmen: The Biology of Opiliones pp. 339–373. Harvard University Press: Cambridge (Massachusetts).

[ES12] Espadaler, X., & S. Santamaria. 2012. Ecto- and endoparasitic fungi on ants from the Holarctic region. Psyche 2012: 168478.

[HB69] Hirschmann, W., F. Bernhard, E. Greim & H. Götz. 1969. Gangsystematik der Parasitiformes. Teil 75. Zwanzig neue Hypoaspis-Arten. Acarologie: Schriftenreihe für Vergleichende Milbenkunde 12: 133–141.

[H79] Howse, P. E. 1979. The uniqueness of insect societies: aspects of defense and integration. In: Larwood, G., & B. R. Rosen (eds) Biology and Systematics of Colonial Organisms pp. 345–374. Academic Press: London.

[L1802a] Latreille, P. A. 1802a. Histoire Naturelle des Fourmis, et recueil de mémoires et d'observations sur les abeilles, les araignées, les faucheurs, et autres insectes. Théophile Barrois père: Paris.

[L1802b] Latreille, P. A. 1802b. Histoire Naturelle, générale et particulière des crustacés et des insectes vol. 3. Familles naturelles des genres. F. Dufart: Paris.

[L02] Lehr, P. A. 2002. Robber-flies (Diptera, Asilidae) of the subfamily Dioctriinae stat. n. (Diptera, Asilidae) of Asia: 2. Taxonomy and ecology. Entomologicheskoe Obozrenie 81 (2): 445–459.

[L58] Linnaeus, C. 1758. Systema Naturae per Regna Tria Naturae, secundum classes, ordines, genera, species, cum characteribus, differentiis, synonymis, locis. Tomus I. Editio decima, reformata. Laurentii Salvii: Holmiae.

[MC05] Machado, G., P. C. Carrera, A. M. Pomini & A. J. Marsaioli. 2005. Chemical defense in harvestmen (Arachnida, Opiliones): do benzoquinone secretions deter invertebrate and vertebrate predators? Journal of Chemical Ecology 31 (11): 2519–2539.

[MS01] Mocsáry, A., & V. Szépligeti. 1901. Hymenopterák [Hymenopteren]. In: Horváth, G. (ed.) Zichy Jenő Gróf Harmadik Ázsiai Utazása [Dritte Asiatische Forschungsreise des Grafen Eugen Zichy] vol. 2. Zichy Jenő Gróf Harmadik Ázsiai Utazásának Állattani Eredményei [Zoologische Ergebnisse der Dritten Asiatischen Forschungsreise des Grafen Eugen Zichy] pp. 121–169. Victor Hornyánszky: Budapest, and Karl W. Hierseman: Leipzig.

[S-SS06] Schlick-Steiner, B. C., F. M. Steiner, K. Moder, B. Seifert, M. Sanetra, E. Dyreson, C. Stauffer & E. Christian. 2006. A multidisciplinary approach reveals cryptic diversity in western Palearctic Tetramorium ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 40 (1): 259–273.

[TB85] Taylor, R. W., & D. R. Brown. 1985. Formicoidea. In: Walton, D. W. (ed.) Zoological Catalogue of Australia vol. 2. Hymenoptera: Formicoidea, Vespoidea and Sphecoidea pp. 1–149. Australian Government Publishing Service: Canberra.

[WD04] Wardhaugh, C. W., & R. K. Didham. 2004. The effect of introduced wasp (Vespula vulgaris, Hymenoptera: Vespidae) predation on the dispersive life history stages of beech scale insects (Ultracoelostoma spp., Homoptera: Margarodidae). New Zealand Entomologist 27: 91–101.

[WW90] Wheeler, G. C., & J. Wheeler. 1990. Insecta: Hymenoptera Formicidae. In: Dindal, D. L. (ed.) Soil Biology Guide pp. 1277–1294. John Wiley & Sones: New York.

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