Aenictus bodongjaya

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Aenictus bodongjaya
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Dorylinae
Genus: Aenictus
Species: A. bodongjaya
Binomial name
Aenictus bodongjaya
Jaitrong & Yamane, 2011

Aenictus bodongjaya casent0903688 p 1 high.jpg

Aenictus bodongjaya casent0903688 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

Only known from the type locality in a coffee plantation at an elevation of ca. 800–900 m alt.

Identification

A member of the laeviceps species group. Jaitrong and Yamane (2011) - Aenictus bodongjaya is most similar to Aenictus hodgsoni but can be separated from the latter by the smooth and shiny legs (in the latter femora extensively superficially reticulate and shiny; tibiae very finely reticulate) and the relatively shorter head (CI 78–81 vs. 83–87). This species is also similar to Aenictus brevinodus, but has denser hairs on the mososomal dorsum (more than 15 hairs in A. bodongjaya, less than 10 hairs in A. brevinodus) and a relatively shorter petiole (clearly longer than high in the former, clearly shorter than high in the latter).

Keys including this Species

Distribution

Indonesia, Bodong Jaya in southern Sumatra

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Indo-Australian Region: Indonesia (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

Little is known about the biology of Aenictus bodongjaya. The genus is comprised of species that live an army ant lifestyle. Aenictus typically prey on other ants, from other genera, or other insects such as wasps or termites. There are reports of Aenictus preying on other insects as well and even have been observed collecting honeydew from homopterans (Santschi, 1933; Gotwald, 1995) but this appears, at least from available evidence, to be uncommon. Foraging raids can occur day or night across the ground surface. Occasionally raids are arboreal. During a raid numerous workers attack a single nest or small area, with several workers coordinating their efforts to carry large prey items back to the nest or bivouac. Aenictus have a nomadic life style, alternating between a migratory phase in which nests are temporary bivouacs in sheltered places above the ground and a stationary phase where semi-permanent underground nests are formed. During the nomadic phase bivouacs move regularly, sometimes more than once a day when larvae require large amounts of food. Individual nests usually contain up to several thousand workers, although nest fragments containing only a few hundred workers are often encountered. Queens are highly specialised and look less like workers than in most ant species. They have greatly enlarged gasters (dichthadiform) and remain flightless throughout their life. New colonies are formed by the division of existing colonies (fission) rather than by individual queens starting colonies on their own.

Castes

Known only from the worker caste.

Nomenclature

The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's New General Catalogue, a catalogue of the world's ants.

  • bodongjaya. Aenictus bodongjaya Jaitrong & Yamane, 2011: 30, figs. 51-53 (w.) INDONESIA (Sumatra).

Unless otherwise noted the text for the remainder of this section is reported from the publication that includes the original description.

Description

Worker

Worker holotype and paratypes (n = 7): TL 2.90–3.20 mm; HL 0.68–0.80 mm; HW 0.53–0.65 mm; SL 0.48–0.58 mm; ML 0.90–1.10 mm; PL 0.20–0.25 mm; CI 78–81; SI 91–100.

(holotype and paratypes). Head in full-face view distinctly longer than broad, with sides slightly convex and posterior margin almost straight or feebly concave; occipital carina very weak but complete. Antennal scape relatively short, extending only 2/3 of head length; antennal segments II–X each longer than broad; II almost as long as each of III–VI. Frontal carina short, not extending beyond the level of posterior margin of torulus; parafrontal ridge absent. Anterior margin of clypeus bearing 5–7 denticles. Masticatory margin of mandible with a large apical tooth followed by a medium-sized subapical tooth, 5–6 denticles, and a small basal tooth; basal margin bearing 3–4 small teeth. Promesonotum in profile weakly convex dosally; propodeum only slightly lower than promesonotum, with its dorsal outline almost straight; propodeal junction roundly angulate; declivity of propodeum shallowly concave and encircled by an indistinct rim. Petiole distinctly longer than high, in profile its dorsum flat to weakly convex; subpetiolar process well developed and hook-like, its apex directed downward and backward; postpetiolar node distinctly shorter than and slightly higher than petiolar node.

Head including mandible and antennal scape entirely smooth and shiny. Pronotum, majority of mesonotum, dorsum of propodeum and upper portion of metapleuron smooth and shiny; remainder of mesosoma punctate. Petiole and postpetiole smooth and shiny. Legs entirely smooth and shiny.

Head and mesosoma dorsally with relatively sparse standing hairs mixed with sparse short hairs over the surface; longest pronotal hair 0.25 mm long. Entire body dark reddish-brown. Typhlatta spot located anterior to occipital corner.

Type Material

Holotype worker from Indonesia, S. Sumatra, Lampung Barat, Sumberjaya, Bodong Jaya, 18 IX 2007, Sk. Yamane leg., SU07-SKY-189 (Bogor Zoological Museum). Sixteen paratype workers, same data as holotype (The Natural History Museum, MZB, SKY Collection, Natural History Museum of the National Science Museum).

Etymology

The specific name is after the type locality, Bodong Jaya in southern Sumatra.

References

Jaitrong, W. & Yamane, S. 2011. Synopsis of Aenictus species groups and revision of the A. currax and A. laeviceps groups in the eastern Oriental, Indo-Australian and Australasian regions. Zootaxa 3128: 1-46.