Lasius vestitus

AntWiki: The Ants --- Online
Lasius vestitus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Formicinae
Tribe: Lasiini
Genus: Lasius
Section: flavus clade
Species group: umbratus
Species: L. vestitus
Binomial name
Lasius vestitus
Wheeler, W.M., 1910

MCZ-ENT 002 Lasius vestitus hal.jpg

MCZ-ENT 002 Lasius vestitus had.jpg

Specimen Label


Limited to the Pacific Northwest and northern California, this species is apparently exceptionally cold-tolerant as workers have been collected foraging on snow in Oregon's Cascade Mountains.


Closely related to Lasius umbratus but easily distinguished in both the queen and worker castes by its unusual body pilosity.

Keys including this Species


Appears to be concentrated along the Pacific Coast, but extends eastward at least as far as western Idaho.

Latitudinal Distribution Pattern

Latitudinal Range: 47.017° to 35.73698°.

Tropical South

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

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.




Images from AntWeb

Lasius vestitus casent0005410 head 1.jpgLasius vestitus casent0005410 profile 1.jpgLasius vestitus casent0005410 dorsal 1.jpgLasius vestitus casent0005410 label 1.jpg
Worker. Specimen code casent0005410. Photographer April Nobile, uploaded by California Academy of Sciences. Owned by UCDC, Davis, CA, USA.


MCZ-ENT 001 Lasius vestitus H.jpgMCZ-ENT 001 Lasius vestitus had.jpgMCZ-ENT 001 Lasius vestitus hal.jpgMCZ-ENT 001 Lasius vestitus lbs.jpg


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

  • vestitus. Lasius umbratus subsp. vestitus Wheeler, W.M. 1910e: 242 (q.) U.S.A. Wilson, 1955a: 174 (w.). Combination in L. (Chthonolasius): Emery, 1925b: 235. Raised to species: Creighton, 1950a: 425. Senior synonym of pilosus: Wilson, 1955a: 173.
  • pilosus. Lasius (Chthonolasius) pilosus Smith, M.R. 1934a: 384 (w.) U.S.A. Junior synonym of vestitus: Wilson, 1955a: 173.

Type Material

Unless otherwise noted the text for the remainder of this section is reported from the publication that includes the original description.



(1) Exposed gastric tergites evenly covered with abundant, long, suberect-erect hairs; the longest over 0.12 mm., or exceeding four-fifths the maximum width of the hind tibia at its midlength. At least a few scattered standing hairs present on the scapes, femora, and tibiae.

(2) Size apparently about the same as in Lasius umbratus; PW range 0.66-0.73 mm. The worker is generally very similar to the large, hairy Eurasian form of umbratus, differing slightly in the length of the body pilosity as exemplified in the above description of the gastric pilosity. At the same time it is strikingly different from the sympatric North American form of umbratus and can be separated at once by its possession of standing hairs on the scapes and tibiae.


(1) Entire body, including the gula, genae, and outer lateral margins of the mandibles, densely covered with long, predominantly erect, silky-yellow hairs. Those on the gaster exceptionally uniform in length and inclination, lending the gaster a brush-like appearance in side view; the longest hairs on the tergites are 0.25 mm., approximately the maximum width of the hind tibia midpoint. These tend to be sparser and shorter on the sides of the alitrunk than on the dorsum, not exceeding 0.14 mm. The numerous hairs set along the dorsal petiolar crest and tibiae with abundant shorter, predominantly subdecumbent-erect hairs on all surfaces. Entire body covered with dense, appressed pubescence.

(2) Total size averaging smaller than other umbratus-complex members, and appendages averaging proportionately longer. HW and SI of all available specimens are as follows: 1.37 mm., 89; 1.42 mm., 90; 1.42 mm., 86; 1.42 mm., 87; 1.43 mm., 89; 1.43 mm., 90; 1.44 mm., 88; 1.46 mm., 85; 1.46 mm., 89; 1.52 mm., SI not measurable.

(3) Body color uniformly medium brown, the appendages light brown.

Type Material

HOLOTYPE. A queen in the Museum of Comparative Zoology, now in poor condition, with the head missing and much of the body pilosity broken down or worn off. Other queens in the same collection, however, show a detailed correspondence in all features that could be studied.


  • Creighton, W. S. 1950a. The ants of North America. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology 104: 1-585 (page 425, raised to species)
  • Emery, C. 1925d. Hymenoptera. Fam. Formicidae. Subfam. Formicinae. Genera Insectorum 183: 1-302 (page 235, Combination in L. (Chthonolasius))
  • Smith, M. R. 1934b. Three new North American ants. Ann. Entomol. Soc. Am. 27: 384-387.
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1910h. The North American forms of Lasius umbratus Nylander. Psyche (Camb.) 17: 235-243 (page 242, queen described)
  • Wilson, E. O. 1955a. A monographic revision of the ant genus Lasius. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology 113: 1-201 (page 173, senior synonym of pilosus; page 174, worker described)

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. 1936. An annotated list of the ants of Idaho (Hymenoptera; Formicidae). Canadian Entomologist 68(2):34-39
  • Longino, J.T. 2010. Personal Communication. Longino Collection Database
  • Parson G. L., G Cassis, A. R. Moldenke, J. D. Lattin, N. H. Anderson, J. C. Miller, P. Hammond, T. Schowalter. 1991. Invertebrates of the H.J. Andrews Experimental Forest, western Cascade Range, Oregon. V: An annotated list of insects and other arthropods. Gen. Tech. Rep. PNW-GTR-290. Portland, OR: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station. 168 p.
  • Wheeler G. C., and J. Wheeler. 1986. The ants of Nevada. Los Angeles: Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, vii + 138 pp.
  • Wheeler W. M. 1910. The North American forms of Lasius umbratus Nylander. Psyche (Cambridge) 17: 235-243.
  • Wheeler, G.C. and J. Wheeler. 1978. Mountain ants of Nevada. Great Basin Naturalist 35(4):379-396
  • Wilson E. O. 1955. A monographic revision of the ant genus Lasius. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology 113: 1-201
  • Yensen N. P., W. H. Clark, and A. Francoeur. 1977. A checklist of Idaho ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Pan-Pacific Entomologist 53: 181-187
  • Yensen, N.P., W.H. Clark and A. Francoeur. 1977. A checklist of Idaho Ants. The Pan-Pacific Entomologist 53:181-187