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Subfamily Myrmicinae

alate ants - Solenopsis invicta Spine-waisted Ant - Aphaenogaster fulva Ants that are preying on termites (all one sp.?)  - Pheidole Ant behavior question? - Tetramorium immigrans Ant - Solenopsis invicta Aphaenogaster - Myrmica rubra Monomorium - female Temnothorax curvispinosus - female
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Hymenoptera (Ants, Bees, Wasps and Sawflies)
No Taxon (Aculeata - Ants, Bees and Stinging Wasps)
Superfamily Formicoidea (Ants)
Family Formicidae (Ants)
Subfamily Myrmicinae
Other Common Names
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Explanation of Names
The largest ant subfamily, containing the most genera and the most species, both in the Nearctic and world-wide. Some of the genera are very diverse on a worldwide scale, including Pheidole, Crematogaster, Solenopsis, Pyramica & Monomorium, the first three well represented in our fauna. Indeed, worldwide Pheidole contains over 1000 described species, with perhaps that many or more remaining to be sorted out, and may be the largest ant genus of all time (the formicine genus Camponotus may rival it).
In the Nearctic, workers usually barely over 1 to ~6 mm (a few to 14 mm)
An important metric character of this group is their two-segmented abdominal waist (pedicel) composed of petiole and postpetiole. Outside the myrmicines, the distinctive Pseudomyrmex and Ecitoninae share this trait.
Key to Genera in the southeastern United States (the most comprehensive online identification resource for this subfamily in North America)
this key to genera works well for northern states
Equatorial to boreal - One extending to within the Arctic Circle.
Grassland to forests, a few in wetlands. Nesting is various, but great majority live in soil, leaf litter or rotting wood on the ground. Many Crematogaster & Temnothorax are arboreal, while many northern and alpine species nest under heat-gathering rocks.
Generalist foragers (most), seed harvesters (Pogonomyrmex, Messor, many Pheidole) and fungus cultivators (Attini) are all found in this group.