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Species: Lasius (Lasius) niger   (Linnaeus, 1758) 

Download Data

See Also:

Lasius niger_cf, Lasius niger_nr, Lasius niger_nr1, Lasius niger pinetorum

Taxonomic History (provided by Barry Bolton, 2019)

Extant: 1 valid subspecies

Formica nigra Linnaeus, 1758 PDF: 580 (w.) EUROPE. Palearctic. AntCat AntWiki HOL

Taxonomic history

Combination in Lasius: Fabricius, 1804 PDF: 415.
Combination in Donisthorpea: Donisthorpe, 1915f: 200.
Combination in Formicina (Donisthorpea): Emery, 1916a PDF: 240.
Combination in Acanthomyops: Forel, 1916 PDF: 460; .
Senior synonym of Lasius nigerrima: Emery, 1892c PDF: 162.
Senior synonym of Lasius pallescens: Mayr, 1861 PDF: 49.
Combination in Acanthomyops (Donisthorpea): Donisthorpe, 1927a PDF: 8; Donisthorpe, 1950e PDF: 1063;.
Senior synonym of Lasius alienoniger, Lasius emeryi, Lasius nitidus, Lasius minimus, Lasius transylvanica and material of the unavailable name Lasius pilicornis referred here: Wilson, 1955a PDF: 59.
Current subspecies: nominal plus Lasius niger pinetorum.
Senior synonym of Lasius alienoniger: Kutter, 1977c: 14.


  Geographic regions (According to curated Geolocale/Taxon lists):
    Americas: Canada, Mexico, United States
    Asia: Japan
    Europe: Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom
  Biogeographic regions (According to curated Bioregion/Taxon lists):
    Nearctic, Palearctic

Distribution Notes:

Found in London.


The ants love Honey and Sugar water. Their young also eat small insects.


Small Black ant. Sometimes seen farming aphids. Similar to other Lasius ants. 


Worker: 3-5mm

Taxonomic Treatment (provided by Plazi)

Scientific Name Status Publication Pages ModsID GoogleMaps
Lasius niger   Forel, A., 1886, Études myrmécologiques en 1886., Annales de la Societe Entomologique de Belgique 30, pp. 131-215: 76, (download) 76 3923
Lasius niger   Forel, A., 1894, Les formicides de l'Empire des Indes et de Ceylan. Part IV. Adjonction aux genres Camponotus, Mayr., et Polyrhachis, Shuck., Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 8, pp. 396-420: 404, (download) 404 3951
Lasius niger   Forel, A., 1904, Note sur les fourmis du Musée Zoologique de l'Académie Impériale des Sciences à St. Pétersbourg., Yezhegodnik Zoologicheskogo Muzeya Imperatorskoi Akademii Nauk 8, pp. 368-388: 19, (download) 19 3994
Lasius niger   Smith, F., 1851, List of the specimens of British animals in the collection of the British Museum. Part VI. - Hymenoptera Aculeata., London: British Museum: 2-3, (download) 2-3 8200
Lasius niger   Emery, C., 1893, Voyage de M. Ch. Alluaud aux iles Canaries. Formicides., Annales de la Société Entomologique de France 62, pp. 81-88: 85, (download) 85 3764
Lasius niger   Forel, A., 1890, Fourmis de Tunisie et de l'Algérie orientale., Annales de la Societe Entomologique de Belgique, Comptes-rendus des Seances 34, pp. 61-76: 67, (download) 67 3926
Lasius niger   Ward, P. S., 2005, A synoptic review of the ants of California (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)., Zootaxa 936, pp. 1-68: -1, (download) -1 21008
Lasius niger   Collingwood, C. A., 1979, The Formicidae (Hymenoptera) of Fennoscandia and Denmark., Fauna Entomologica Scandinavica 8, pp. 1-174: 99-100, (download) 99-100 6175

Specimen Habitat Summary

Found most commonly in these habitats: 1245 times found in Unknown, 695 times found in anthropogenic, 258 times found in dry grassland, 183 times found in heathlands, 168 times found in Wet grassland, 167 times found in Forest, 64 times found in dunes & inland dunes, 52 times found in shrubs, 39 times found in Rocks (rocky-calcareous grasslands), 16 times found in nest under stone, pine forest, rocky loam soil, ...

Found most commonly in these microhabitats: 12 times under rock, 14 times on the ground, 7 times under stone, 3 times nest under rock, 1 times under rocks, 3 times ground nest, 3 times on path, 2 times nest under rocks in exposed area, 1 times crater nest in soil, 2 times nest under rock at bottom of gully, 3 times country lane, ...

Collected most commonly using these methods: 1398 times Manual catch, 607 times Pitfall trap, 74 times search, 64 times Color trap, 21 times hand collecting, 26 times White pitfall, 11 times Hand, 5 times White color trap, 5 times insect net, 5 times Malaise trap, 5 times beating, ...

Elevations: collected from 3 - 2685 meters, 775 meters average

Type specimens: type of Lasius niger: casent0903221

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