Pogonomyrmex rugosus - rough harvester ant
Arizona, USA

photograph © Alex Wild 2008

A Pogonomyrmex worker shows off her psammophore, the basket of long hairs on the underside of her head used for carrying sand grains.  This structure enticed Austrian taxonomist Gustav Mayr to name this genus Pogonomyrmex, or "bearded ant".

USA AZ Pima Co.: Tucson
32º14.24'N 110º56.44'W 750m. iii.2008
Urban lot, nest in soil.

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 MP-E 65mm 1-5x macro lens.