Answer to the Monday Night Mystery

You didn’t seriously think I’d Mystery the same ant I’d shown earlier in the day. Would I be that easy?

Camponotus (Colobopsis) obliquus, North Carolina

Of course not.  That doesn’t mean I’d not post a convergently similar ant in the same genus just to double-psyche you all out. While both Camponotus ulcerosus and Camponotus obliquus have major workers with phragmotic entrance-plugging heads, each has independently arrived at its peculiar morphology from more typical ant ancestors. The giveaway in this case is the large circular fovae on the head, indicative of the subgenus Colobopsis but absent in Camponotus ulcerosus.

I am glad, though, that you readers are such willing participants in my diabolical mental experiments.

BWahahahahahahahaHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAA HAAAAAHHH! (<— mad scientist laugh)

Anyway. On to the awarding of points.

First, two points to Benoit, because he collected these for me this summer in North Carolina.

No one gets full credit this week, I’m afraid, because of the earlier incorrect species guesses. Still, I’ll give four points to Morgan Jackson for being the first to family and genus, two points each to Josh King (for getting Colobopsis) and James Trager (for picking obliquus). And one point to Dave, who correctly used the word “phragmotic” in a sentence.

3 thoughts on “Answer to the Monday Night Mystery”

  1. Technically, Colobopsis shouldn’t even belong in Camponotus, unless we count Polyrhachis, Calomyrmex, and maybe other camponotine genera as part of Camponotus, which would be impractical. Right?

  2. I don’t know anything about ants and there are valid reasons to doubt my opinion on everything, but award ten points to yourself for finally creating a real mystery. Way way way too many (did I say way? oh I did?) way too many “mysteries” that were guessed almost before you posted them.

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