Formica impexa

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Formica impexa
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Formicinae
Tribe: Formicini
Genus: Formica
Species: F. impexa
Binomial name
Formica impexa
Wheeler, W.M., 1905

Formica impexa casent0103361 profile 1.jpg

Formica impexa casent0103361 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen labels

Formica implexa is known from only a few specimens.


The worker of this species is easily recognized, as there are several suberect hairs along the ex-tensor surface of the middle and posterior tibiae, as well as along the shaft of the scape. The entire head (dorsal and ventral surfaces), mesosoma, petiole, and gaster have numerous erect hairs, many of these are blunt-tipped to even spatulate, especially the hairs on the mesosoma. The head, mesosoma, and petiole are reddish-brown, the legs are medium brown, the gaster is dark brown. The dorsal surface of the gaster is dull and punctate, and discovered with scattered, erect hairs.

The queen is a small ant, about 2/3 the size of the largest major, with abundant erect and suberect hairs on the scapes and the tibiae. Erect hairs are abundant on other surfaces, including the upper and lower surfaces of the head, dorsum of the mesosoma, dorsum of the petiole, and dorsum of the gaster. Many of the hairs are blunt-tipped, which would serve to separate the queens of this species from those of Formica microgyna.

The numerous hairs on the tibiae, as well as along the shaft of the scape, would separate this species from nearly everything else in the microgyna group, except for F. microgyna. It can be separated from this species as the propodeum is lower, and suberect hairs on the gaster are approximately the same length.

Keys including this Species


Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Nearctic Region: Canada, United States (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb







The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's Online Catalogue of the Ants of the World.

  • impexa. Formica impexa Wheeler, W.M. 1905c: 273 (w.) U.S.A. Wheeler, W.M. 1906a: 40 (q.). See also: Wheeler, W.M. 1913f: 472.

Taxonomic Notes

It is possible that when more material becomes available, this species will be shown to be a synonym of F. microgyna.



  • Bolton, B. 1995b. A new general catalogue of the ants of the world. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 504 pp. (page 196, catalogue)
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1905d. New species of Formica. Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist. 21: 267-274 (page 273, worker described)
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1906f. New ants from New England. Psyche (Camb.) 13: 38-41. (page 40, queen described)
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1913i. A revision of the ants of the genus Formica (Linné) Mayr. Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. 53: 379-565 (page 472, see also)

References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Canadensys Database. Dowloaded on 5th February 2014 at
  • Ellison A. M., and E. J. Farnsworth. 2014. Targeted sampling increases knowledge and improves estimates of ant species richness in Rhode Island. Northeastern Naturalist 21(1): NENHC-13–NENHC-24.
  • Glasier J. R. N., S. E. Nielsen, J. Acorn, and J. Pinzon. 2019. Boreal sand hills are areas of high diversity for Boreal ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Diversity 11, 22; doi:10.3390/d11020022.
  • Paiero, S.M. and S.A. Marshall. 2006. Bruce Peninsula Species list . Online resource accessed 12 March 2012
  • Sharplin, J. 1966. An annotated list of the Formicidae (Hymenoptera) of Central and Southern Alberta. Quaetiones Entomoligcae 2:243-253
  • Wheeler G. C., J. N. Wheeler, and P. B. Kannowski. 1994. Checklist of the ants of Michigan (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). The Great Lakes Entomologist 26(4): 297-310
  • Wheeler, G.C., J. Wheeler and P.B. Kannowski. 1994. CHECKLIST OF THE ANTS OF MICHIGAN (HYMENOPTERA: FORMICIDAE). Great Lakes Entomologist 26:1:297-310