Brachymyrmex patagonicus
Arizona, USA

photograph © Alex Wild 2006

Ants mating.  The tiny male is little more than a flying sperm delivery vessel whose life ends shortly after mating.  The much larger female will strike out on her own to start a new ant colony.  Her bulk is necessary for a life of prolific egg production.

USA AZ Pima Co.: Tucson
730m 32º14.3´N 110º58.0´W 
21.iv.2006 Urban Lot, at blacklight 2100hr.
A. L. Wild #AW2812, voucher specimens deposited at ALWC.

This image is copyrighted by the photographer and cannot be used without permission. To obtain permission to use this image, please email Alex Wild. (alwild (at)  Most of the photographs on are reduced from their original size and compressed for more efficient web transmission.  In some cases, higher quality versions are available.

This image was captured with a Canon EOS D60, with a Canon 65/2.8 MPE 1-5x Macro lens.