Cardiocondyla elegans

C. elegans is a small (about 2-3 mm in size) monogynous ant species which lives in the soil. Queens and males are produced seasonally and mate inside the nest. In contrast to many ant species, C. elegans sexuals do not engage in mating flights. Workers trade the sexuals between nests to reduce inbreeding and spread their genes. A part of the photographs were taken during our field studies in Southern France.