The big-eyed arboreal ant, Pseudomyrmex apache, on manzanita in Groveland
These ants were collected on a manzanita in Pine Mountain Lake, Groveland, California by Ryder Richards. 12 August 2020.
The ants are Pseudomyrmex apache, identified by Dr. Philip Ward. He states “an elegant arboreal ant that belongs to a predominantly Neotropical genus. One of my favorites.” Indeed, this ant is special. (and they never invade homes)
Dr. Ward has published a number of papers on this family of ants. Here are just a few, of many:
The ant subfamily Pseudomyrmecinae (Hymenoptera: Formicidae): generic revision and relationship to other formicids
The ant subfamily Pseudomyrmecinae (Hymenoptera: Formicidae): phylogeny and evolution of big‐eyed arboreal ants
Ants (Hymenoptera: Formiddae) of Santa Cruz Island, California
There is no common name for this particular species, but members of the subfamily Pseudomyrmecinaeenus are often called big-eye arboreal ants, Dr Philip Ward tells me.