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Photo#620435
Ants - 3 castes - Camponotus subbarbatus - male - female

Ants - 3 castes - Camponotus subbarbatus - Male Female
Oak Ridge, Guilford County, North Carolina, USA
March 15, 2012
Size: about 4 to 7 mm
Minor worker tending male.

Images of this individual: tag all
Ants - 3 castes - Camponotus subbarbatus - male - female Ants - 3 castes - Camponotus subbarbatus - female Ants - 3 castes - Camponotus subbarbatus - male - female

Moved
Mea culpa - This should have been left in C*subbarbatus.

Moved

Moved
Moved from ID Request.

How many castes?
Now that I have posted these I seem to see in this picture that the
head of the worker is intermediate in size and shape to the big-headed and the small-headed individuals in the other picture of two workers side by side. Could someone comment on this?

Thanks.

 
Continuous polymorphism
Ants of various genera and species show different degrees of polymorphism. Camponotus are considered continuously polymorphic in that they show a gradient of size variation from smallest minor workers to largest majors. The major subcaste is somewhat more clearly defined and can be recognized by proportions (especially head to body) among other characters. Intermediate workers are variously referred to as medias (though some use this for strictly trimorphic species), large minors, submajors, etc.
Typically majors are the most useful individuals for identification, at least in North American Camponotus.
Some ants, like those in the genus Pheidole, are dimorphic, with strictly defined minor and major subcastes and no intermediates.

 
Thank you!
This is wonderful information, E.E.

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