Lycaena xanthoides - Great Copper (Lycaenidae) &
Formica francoeuri
California, USA

photograph © Alex Wild 2006

The larvae of many species of Lycaenid butterflies are associated with ants.  Here a Lycaena is tended by a Formica ant.

USA CA: San Diego Co. 
Laguna Mtns. Pine Valley, Pine Creek x Pine Creek Road. 1110m. 32.85476°N, 116.52280°W.

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 20D, using a Canon 65/2.8 MPE 1-5x Macro lens.