squirrel's picture

Wood ants

Observed: 5th May 2010 By: squirrelsquirrel’s reputation in Invertebratessquirrel’s reputation in Invertebratessquirrel’s reputation in Invertebratessquirrel’s reputation in Invertebrates
DSC_0726.jpg
DSC_0710.jpg
DSC_0707.jpg
Description:

nest about half meter across, for about 3 meters around the nest just lots of ants.

Identifications
Species interactions

No interactions present.

Comments

Syrphus's picture

Until very recently you would

Until very recently you would have called these Formica rufa. It has emerged now that most of the 'F. rufa' in England and Wales are actually fertile hybrids between rufa and polyctena, and that there are some true F. polyctena and true F. rufa nests as well. So far they can only be told apart by biochemistry.

It would be safe to call all wood ants that are not aquilonia (Scotland only) or lugubris (Scotland and N England) 'Formica rufa group', and no-one will mind if you just carry on calling them F. rufa.

Await similar developments with White-tailed Bumblebees Bombus lucorum s.l. You ain't seen nuthin' yet!

M.

TRY

recording wildlife with The Recorder's Year on www.hbrg.org.uk/TRY.html.