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The species of the genus Camponotus are collectively known as carpenter ants because they most commonly nest in wooded areas, with preferences for humid environments, including man-made structures. The Florida carpenter ant complex is comprised of several species, two of which are most commonly found around structures, Camponotus floridanus and Camponotus tortuganus. Although most Camponotus species in the United States are considered pests of minor importance, during their flight season Florida carpenter ants can often be found in very large numbers and they are considered one of the most serious structural pest species within thier range of distribution, from North Carolina to Florida and west to Mississippi, with colonies that may contain up to eight thousand individuals.
Bonasio and collaborators sequenced and compared the genomes of two socially divergent ant species, the Indian jumping ant Harpegnathos saltator and the Florida carpenter ant Camponotus floridanus. The results of their studies were published in the journal Science in 2010, providing clues on the molecular differences between castes in these two ants, and establishing a new experimental model to study epigenetics in aging and behavior.