A giant marvel of nature, North America's largest Carpenter Ant - Camponotus US-CA02, a species which is yet to be officially described or studied scientifically.
This species has only been found throughout the hills in Southern California at present.
These carpenter ants are known for the characteristically long legs and giant majors which can reach upto 18mm in size! They are often found foraging for food amongst shrubs as these are often found in 'Chaparrales" which is a type of shrubland plant community in the US.
Interestingly, from ant keeper's journals it seems that despite their large size, they develop rather quickly in comparison to other species in their genus. Whilst the queen has a black, matt thorax and orange gaster, workers are a completely, marmalade orange throughout! How cool is that?
This species does well in a tubs and tubes setup once the founding colony begins to develop.
In captivity, they seem to take a large range of insects and are very fond of sugary liquid substances as most other Camponotus.
Once majors grow, care should be taken as mandibles will draw blood!
If you're looking to add something completely new to your collection, these girls are definitely it.
It is illegal and strictly frowned upon to release any non-native ants into the wild.