Polyergus breviceps and Formica argentea
Truckee, California, USA

photograph © Alex Wild 2004

The easy life of a parasite.  Here a red slave-raiding Polyergus ant is being carried by a Formica slave, who behaves as though the parasite were her own sister.  The Polyergus ant has curled up and tucked in her legs so as to facilitate transport. 

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.