Camponotus taino

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Camponotus taino
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Formicinae
Tribe: Camponotini
Genus: Camponotus
Species: C. taino
Binomial name
Camponotus taino
Snelling, R.R. & Torres, 1998

Camponotus taino casent0903616 p 1 high.jpg

Camponotus taino casent0903616 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

Once thought to be (and misidentified as) Camponotus ustus, this species presumably lives in twigs and dead stems. A collection from St John was found in a sea grape stem.

Identification

Snelling and Torres (1998): Female castes. Head margins in frontal view subparallel and provided with numerous short erect setae; free clypeal margin concave and with small median process, thin and without triangular beveled area above margin; antennal scape with numerous fully erect short and long setae; mandible with 6 teeth.

Distribution

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Neotropical Region: Cuba, Greater Antilles, Puerto Rico (type locality).

Snelling and Torres (1998): As far as is currently known, C. taino is limited to Puerto Rico. In addition to the type material, we have seen specimens from a dozen additional Puerto Rican localities. This species appears to be the less common of the two Puerto Rican ants previously misidentified as Camponotus ustus by Wheeler (1908) and all subsequent authors. The presence of numerous short, erect setae on the malar area and along the sides of the head will permit easy recongition of C. taino.

Since 1998 records of this species are now known from Saint John, USVI (Z. Prusak, 1995) and Culebra Island (Wheeler).

Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

Castes

Nomenclature

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

  • taino. Camponotus taino Snelling, R.R. & Torres, 1998: 8, figs. 13-16 (s.w.q.m.) PUERTO RICO. Also note reference: Camponotus taino Fontenla Rizo, 1997b: 58, CUBA [not seen].

Description

Worker

Snelling and Torres1998 kaura taino.jpeg
Major worker, measurements (mm) (n=25): HW 1.23-1.54 (1.35); HL 1.39-1.68 (1.49); SL 0.97-1.09 (1.01); WL 1.8-2.3 (2.0); TL 5.8-6.8 (6.3). Ratios and indices: CI 109-113 (110); SI 63-70 (68); OI 24-27 (26); OMR 54-66 (57).

Head longer than wide in frontal view, sides straight or nearly so, weakly converging below, LHW about 0.8 X HW; dorsolateral lobes weak and margin between them weakly concave or flat. Eyes large and flat, outer margins failing to attain head margins by less than minimum scape diameter. Frontal lobes broad, greatest intercarinal distance almost 0.5 X HW; upper intercarinal distance subequal to intercarinal distance. Clypeal midline weakly obtuse; free margin thin and shallowly concave between rounded lateral angles and with small median tooth. Antennal scape surpassing vertex margin by about its apical width or slightly less. Mandible with 6 teeth.

Front of head slightly to moderately shiny, surfaces finely tessellate; (entire front and sides of head with sparse fine setigerous punctures that become closer in malar area adjacent to clypeus; clypeal punctures finer and less distinct. Mandible shiny between fine sparse setigerous punctures. Posterior surface of head shinier, punctures coarser than on malar area.

All surfaces of head with numerous short erect setae and sparser, variably longer setae; usual long setae of margins of frontal lobes and vertex present but inconspicuous; mandible with many short erect setae; scape shaft with numerous very short setae, mostly on frontal and dorsal surfaces; eyes with sparse very short setae.

Mesosoma: Profile of pronotum and mesonotum nearly flat; propodeum broadly rounded onto distinct declivitous face that is usually slightly concave; metanotal depression absent. Pronotal dorsum about 1.3 X as wide as long and about 3.5 X as wide as propodeum at summit of declivity. Profemur about 2.3 as long as deep.

Dorsum of mesosoma with numerous very short to short erect setae; pronotum with 8-10 longer erect setae that are only weakly inclined cephalad, longest about 0.6 X MOD; mesonotum with 2 similar longer setae; propodeum, at summit of declivity, with 6-8 longer setae, longest subequal to MOD. Profemur with sparse short and longer setae along outer face and 6-8 longer well-spaced setae along ventral margin; meso- and metafemora and tibiae with sparse suberect, very short setae, femora with scattered longer setae; meso and metatibiae with row of bristles along flexor surface.

Petiole scale thin-cuneate in profile, summit acute; summit, in posterior view, straight or weakly convex and with 3 or 4 long setae on either side, longest distinctly longer than longest pronotal setae.

Gaster shiny, finely transversely lineolate. T1 with transverse band of 4-8 long setae at summit of declivity, submedian pair longest; disc with transverse band of shorter, widely spaced setae at midlength in addition to usual marginal band; T2- T4 with subbasal bands; all terga with sparse short erect setae.

Color about as described for Camponotus kaura, but head commonly largely brownish.

Minor workers, measurements (mm) (n=45): HW 0.77-1.05; HL 0.95-1.19; SL 1.07-1.21; WL 1.4-1.7; TL 4.2-5.4. Ratios and indices: CI 11-129; SI 100-111; OI 32-34; OMR 76-89. No workers comparable to the media workers of C. kaura have been seen. The minor workers are similar to the major, but are more slender, with proportionately longer antennal scapes; vertex evenly convex in frontal view, shortest setae proportionately shorter and less abundant.

Queen

measurements (mm) (n=10): HW 1.23-1.37; HL 1.41-1.57; SL 1.10-1.11; WL 2.4-2.8; TL 6.8-8.1. Ratios and indices: CI 113-115; SI 71-79; OI 33-47; OMR 96-104.

Head about as in major worker, but eyes larger, extending slightly beyond head margins in frontal view; EL about 0.8 X OMD; ocelli small, IOD about 3 X OD, OVD about 2.5 X OD. Scape surpassing vertex margin by about its apical width.

Mesosoma about as in Camponotus kaura but dorsum additionally with numerous very short setae.

Petiole and gaster about as described for major.

Male

Males of the 3 species are similar: all are yellowish to brownish yellow, often with limited darker brownish areas on the head and mesosoma. They are similar in size, about 4.5-5.5 mm long. The smallest of the 3 species is Camponotus taino, in which males are seldom over 4.6 mm long, but some individuals up to 4.9 mm long have been seen; HW usually falls between 0.69-0.73 mm and occasionally reaches 0.76 mm. Males of the 2 remaining species, Camponotus kaura and [[Camponotus ustus, are usually about 5.4-5.6 mm long, but with some individuals above and below that range. In C. ustus, HW ranges between 0.88 and 0.95 mm; too few are available for a trend to be clear, but HW is usually over 0.90 mm. Males of C. kaura are a little smaller, with a HW ranging between 0.78 and 0.91 mm, and in over 90% of the 54 males measured it exceeded 0.80 mm, with over 70% falling between 0.82 and 0.91 mm.

The ocelli of C. kaura males are generally larger, and the 100 ranges between 1.5-2.5 X OD; in most examples, it is 2.2 or less. In both C. ustus and C. taino, the ocelli are smaller, and the IOD is 2.3-2.6 X OD, usually about 2.5 X OD.

Pilosity of the antennal scape is consistently different between the 3 species. In C. kaura, it consists exclusively of fine, fully appressed pubescence, except for several long, suberect distal setae. The scapal pubescence of C. taino, in contrast, is abundant, coarse, and subdecumbent to suberect; the setae are quite short, less than 0.025 mm long. Camponotus ustus is also provided with an abundance of similar short setae, but in addition there are scattered fine suberect setae that are about 0.08 mm long.

The metatibiae reflect similar differences: setae are fine and fully appressed in C. kaura, relatively coarse and subdecumbent to suberect and uniformly short in C. taino, and, finally, similar to C. taino, but with additional scattered longer setae in C. ustus.

Type Material

Holotype major worker, PUERTO RICO: El Verde Field Station (Río Grande), 200 m, 25 July 1989 (Snelling, R.R. & Torres, RRS #89-28b), ex dead branch in tree, "Tabonuco" rainforest, in LACM. Paratypes: numerous workers with same data, as well as additional workers collected at same locality, 19 Feb. 1988 (T. Gush, #TG-I050), in The Natural History Museum, Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History, Museum of Comparative Zoology, National Museum of Natural History.

Etymology

This species is dedicated to the Taino Arawak people, the original inhabitants of Puerto Rico and adjacent islands at the time of the European arrival in the Western Hemisphere; the name is a masculine noun in apposition.

References

  • Snelling, R. R.; Torres, J. A. 1998. Camponotus ustus Forel and two similar new species from Puerto Rico (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Contr. Sci. (Los Angel.) 469: 1-10 (page 8, figs. 13-16 soldier, worker, queen, male described)
  • Fontenla Rizo, J. L. 1997c. Nuevas especies de Camponotus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) de Cuba. Avicennia 6/ 7: 54-60 (page 58, fig. worker described)
  • Wheeler, W.M. 1908. The ants of Porto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 24:1 17- 158.