Epopostruma areosylva

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Epopostruma areosylva
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Epopostruma
Species: E. areosylva
Binomial name
Epopostruma areosylva
Shattuck, 2000

Epopostruma areosylva holotype ANIC32-003663 side 50-AntWiki.jpg

Epopostruma areosylva holotype ANIC32-003663 top 50-AntWiki.jpg

Specimen labels

Epopostruma areosylva occurs from south-eastern Queensland south to central New South Wales. Collections have been made in dry sclerophyll, open grasslands and Eucalyptus forests.

Identification

Anterior face of postpetiole similar in length to or shorter than the dorsal and posterior faces. Sides of postpetiole approximately vertical and rounding gradually from dorsal to posterior surfaces and with spines or angles at the anterior and posterior corners. In dorsal view the posterolateral teeth of the postpetiole wider than the anterolateral teeth. First gastral tergite smooth or nearly so, at most with only very weak, widely spaced rugae.

Keys including this Species

Distribution

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Australasian Region: Australia (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

While Epopostruma can be fairly common they are often overlooked. Workers are slow-moving and most lie motionless when disturbed. Their nests are small, with up to about 100 workers, and are found in open soil or in soil under rocks, logs or small sticks. They also nest in cracks in large rocks. When nesting in open soil they are often found near the bases of trees. Tree-trunks are clearly an important substrate for foraging workers.

Almost all species forage at night although one species is known to occasionally forage on mallee stems during the day. They are also regularly found in leaf litter. Workers have been attracted to honey baits on trees in the late evening and at night. Their elongate and specialised mandibles form a type of snap-trap which is used to captured soft-bodied prey such as Collembola.

Castes

Nomenclature

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

  • areosylva. Epopostruma areosylva Shattuck, in Bolton, 2000: 62, figs. 69, 81 (w.) AUSTRALIA.

Type Material

Holotype Specimen Labels

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

Description

In full face view the lateral margin of the head between the eye and the posterior corner angular. Pronotal spines present, distinct. Posterior section of metanotum in approximately the same plane as the dorsal face of propodeum, the junction of these plates a very shallow depression. Posterior face of propodeum between bases of spines and propodeal lobes with thin flanges. Petiolar spines present, distinct. Anterior face of postpetiole similar in length to or shorter than the dorsal and posterior faces; sides of postpetiole approximately vertical and rounding gradually from dorsal to posterior surfaces and with spines or angles at the anterior and posterior corners; in dorsal view the posterolateral teeth of the postpetiole wider than the anterolateral teeth; posterolateral margin of postpetiole (immediately anterior of gaster) weakly concave. Dorsum of petiole, postpetiole and gaster with numerous elongate erect hairs, the majority of which are bend near their tips. First gastral tergite smooth or nearly so; gaster immediately behind attachment with gaster with very short rugae. Body colour varying from yellow-red to red-brown with the dorsal surface of head darker than the body; gaster either uniform in colour or with a dark band across the posterior section of the first tergite.

Measurements

Holotype worker. TL 3.9mm, HL 0.83mm, HW 0.81mm, CI 98, MandL 0.48mm, MandI 58, SL 0.54mm, SI 67, PronW 0.53mm, ML 0.98mm.

References

  • Shattuck, S. O. 2000. Genus Colobostruma. Genus Mesostruma. Genus Epopostruma. Pp. 31-67 in: Bolton, B. The ant tribe Dacetini. Mem. Am. Entomol. Inst. 65: 1-1028 (page 62, worker described)