Formica manni

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Formica manni
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Formicinae
Tribe: Formicini
Genus: Formica
Species: F. manni
Binomial name
Formica manni
Wheeler, W.M., 1913

Formica manni casent0005381 profile 1.jpg

Formica manni casent0005381 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen labels


The series of specimens includes many workers and three females, two from Kiona and one from Owen's Lake. At first sight this species, on account of its smooth and shining body and the character of the pubescence, appears to belong in the fusca group, but the structure of the clypeus seems to associate it more naturally with sanguinea. In the shape of the body it shows an even closer relationship to F. per­gandei, munda, and emeryi. The small size of the female seems to indicate that it is a parasitic species. Mr. Mann informs me that the colonies are small and nest under stones in dry, hot, and often sandy, desert country.


Western United States.

Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: 47.42346° to 33.03°.

Tropical South

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Nearctic Region: United States (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps


Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Countries Occupied

Number of countries occupied by this species based on AntWiki Regional Taxon Lists. In general, fewer countries occupied indicates a narrower range, while more countries indicates a more widespread species.

Estimated Abundance

Relative abundance based on number of AntMaps records per species (this species within the purple bar). Fewer records (to the left) indicates a less abundant/encountered species while more records (to the right) indicates more abundant/encountered species.


Nevada, Wheeler and Wheeler (1986) - This species is abundant and widely distributed throughout the state north of latitude 38°N; 3,800-8,000 ft., mostly between 4,000 ft. and 7,000 ft. We have 120 records from 104 localities. Of these records 29 are from the Pinyon-Juniper Biome and 78 from the Cool Desert (18 from Sarcobatus Subclimax, 2 on the edge of a marsh, 1 on a revegetating playa, and 3 from disturbed habitats). We have no records from the Hot Desert, Coniferous Forest or Alpine Biomes. We have notes on 50 nests: 24 were under stones; 14 of the exposed nests were surmounted by a crater 5-17 cm in diameter; the remainder had a messy mass of excavated earth varying in shape. We have often noted that F. manni is fast and timid, but that some of the populous colonies may be aggressive. We found it once as a slave of Polyergus mexicanus (Wheeler & Wheeler, 1986; Trager, 2013; de la Mora et al., 2021).



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

  • manni. Formica manni Wheeler, W.M. 1913f: 420 (w.q.) U.S.A. Combination in F. (Raptiformica): Emery, 1925b: 259.



Length 3.5-4.5 mm. Body slender. Head, excluding the mandibles, longer than broad, a little narrower in front than behind, with straight sides and feebly convex posterior border. Clypeus carinate, its anterior border feebly and rather broadly notched in the middle. Frontal carinae sub­parallel behind. Antennae slender, scapes not incrassated toward their tips. Thorax long, pro- and mesonotum moderately convex; mesoepinota.l constriction shallow; epinotum angular in profile, with subequal base and declivity. Petiole rather narrow; in profile cune­ ate, rather thick at the base, gradually narrowed towards the summit, with nearly flat anterior and posterior surfaces, the border rather sharp; seen from behind entire or very feebly excised in the middle. Legs rather long. Body very finely shagreened, shining, especially the gaster; the clypeus and mandibles somewhat more opaque, finely striated, the former also sparsely punctate.

Hairs whitish, long, rather slender, erect, sparse; conspicuous on the upper surface of the head, clypeus, gula, thoracic dorsum, petiolar border, gaster, and fore coxae. Pubescence very short and sparse, most clearly visible on the gaster and legs but far from concealing the ground surface; scarcely perceptible on the cheeks and pleurae. Rich red, legs a little paler and more yellowish; small workers darker and more brownish; tips of antennal funiculi and sometimes also the posterodorsal portion of the head in the large workers slightly infus­cated; gaster always deep black throughout.


(DEALATED). Length 6-7 mm. Closely resembling the worker in sculpture, pilosity, and color. The notch in the clypeus is very broad and shallow and the carina very blunt or lacking. The petiole is broad, with a flat, very sharp border. The mesonotum bears three faint brownish blotches, the wing-insertions and sutures of the thorax are blackish and the base of the first gastric segment is red, the posterior borders of the seg­ments yellowish.

Type Material

Washington: Kiona, (W. M. Mann). Washington: Wapata, Wenatchee, Ellensburg (W. M. Mann). California: Owen's Lake (H. F. Wickham).


References based on Global Ant Biodiversity Informatics

  • Allred D. M. 1982. Ants of Utah. The Great Basin Naturalist 42: 415-511.
  • Allred, D.M. 1982. The ants of Utah. Great Basin Naturalist 42:415-511.
  • Cole A. C., Jr. 1936. An annotated list of the ants of Idaho (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Canadian Entomologist 68: 34-39.
  • Cole A. C., Jr. 1942. The ants of Utah. American Midland Naturalist 28: 358-388.
  • Cole, A.C. 1936. An annotated list of the ants of Idaho (Hymenoptera; Formicidae). Canadian Entomologist 68(2):34-39
  • Knowlton G. F. 1970. Ants of Curlew Valley. Proceedings of the Utah Academy of Sciences, Arts and Letters 47(1): 208-212.
  • La Rivers I. 1968. A first listing of the ants of Nevada. Biological Society of Nevada, Occasional Papers 17: 1-12.
  • Longino, J.T. 2010. Personal Communication. Longino Collection Database
  • Mallis A. 1941. A list of the ants of California with notes on their habits and distribution. Bulletin of the Southern California Academy of Sciences 40: 61-100. 
  • Mann W. M. 1911. On some Northwestern ants and their guests. Psyche (Cambridge) 18: 102-109.
  • MontBlanc E. M., J. C. Chambers, and P. F. Brussard. 2007. Variation in ant populations with elevation, tree cover, and fire in a Pinyon-Juniper-dominated watershed. Western North American Naturalist 67(4): 469–491.
  • Ostoja S. M., E. W. Schupp, and K. Sivy. 2009. Ant assemblages in intact big sagebrush and converted cheatgrass-dominates habitats in Tooele County, Utah. Western North American Naturalist 69(2): 223–234.
  • Smith F. 1941. A list of the ants of Washington State. The Pan-Pacific Entomologist 17(1): 23-28.
  • Wheeler G. C., and J. Wheeler. 1986. The ants of Nevada. Los Angeles: Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, vii + 138 pp.
  • Wheeler, G.C. and J. Wheeler. 1988. A checklist of the ants of Wyoming. Insecta Mundi 2(3&4):230-239
  • Wilson E. O., and W. L. Brown, Jr. 1955. Revisionary notes on the sanguinea and neogagates groups of the ant genus Formica. Psyche (Cambridge) 62: 108-129.