Euprenolepis negrosensis

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Euprenolepis negrosensis
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Formicinae
Tribe: Lasiini
Genus: Euprenolepis
Species: E. negrosensis
Binomial name
Euprenolepis negrosensis
(Wheeler, W.M., 1930)

Euprenolepis-negrosensis-lateral-am-lg.jpg

Euprenolepis-negrosensis-am-lg.jpg

Nothing is known about the biology of this species.

Identification

This species is easily distinguished from other species and is by far the most morphologically peculiar species in the genus. It has exceedingly long scapes, and an incredibly elongated, narrow body. Brown (1953) transferred this species to Euprenolepis based on the constriction of the mesosoma immediately behind the pronotum and the short labial and maxillary palps. As discussed under the genus diagnosis section, however, this placement remains problematic. To my knowledge this species has only been collected three times, and what is really needed are specimens that can be utilized for molecular analysis to confirm placement within Euprenolepis. Euprenolepis echinata has a similarly shaped pronotum and this may indicate a close relationship with E. negrosensis. Also as in E. negrosensis, E. echinata possesses particularly long erect setae, especially on the gaster. (Lapolla 2009)

Keys including this Species

Distribution

Known from Borneo (Sabah) and the Philippines.

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Indo-Australian Region: Borneo, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

Biological details regarding the small number of species within this genus are sparse. The best characterized species is Euprenolepis procera, with the following known details. It has polymorphic workers. Colonies are nomadic and on average stay in any single location less than a week. Nests contain from 500 – 5,000 workers and are opportunistically situated in suitable preformed cavities. Emigrations appear driven by the need to find their almost exclusive source of nutrients, mushrooms. Foraging takes place nocturnally. While knowledge of the remaining species is sparse, there is some indication that that polymorphism is not the norm. It is also unclear if procera is the only species, within this genus and within ants as a whole, that feed directly and almost exclusively on mushrooms.

Castes

Nomenclature

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

  • negrosensis. Chapmanella negrosensis Wheeler, W.M. 1930d: 42, fig. 1 (w.) PHILIPPINES. LaPolla, 2009: 11 (q.m.). Combination in Euprenolepis: Brown, 1953h: 6.

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

Description

Worker

LaPolla (2009) - Measurements (n=1): TL: 4.10; HW: 0.79; HL: 0.96; SL: 2.05; WL: 1.77; GL: 1.37. Indices: CI: 82; SI: 259.

Wheeler 1930

Head brownish-yellow, with mandibles slightly darker; head much longer than broad. Head becomes slightly wider anteriorly. Head with abundant, long, thin erect setae, only sparse pubescence. Eyes very small, medially placed. Scapes exceptionally long, surpassing posterior margin by about the length of the funiculi; covered in abundant long, thin erect setae of varying lengths, with scattered pubescence. Mandibles similar to other Euprenolepis, but basal tooth is roughly quadriform relative to inner mandibular margin; masticatory margin with two small cuspids (one specimen, however, observed with an obtuse angle to the basal tooth as seen in other Euprenolepis). Mesosoma brownish-yellow, shiny, with legs the same color. Pronotum elongate and low as it rises toward mesonotum; mesosomal dorsum with many scattered thin, erect setae of various lengths. Mesosomal dorsum at about the same height across length except toward anterior pronotum and propodeum; mesonotal area elongated. Propodeum dorsally rounded with steep, but short declivity; propodeum dorsum with abundant thin, erect setae of various lengths. Procoxae especially elongated and thin. Petiole triangular, low, not higher than propodeum in lateral view; posterior face longer than anterior face; gaster brownish-yellow with thin, long erect setae and no pubescence underneath.

Queen

LaPolla (2009) - Measurements (n=1): TL: 8.7; HW: 1.2; HL: 1.3; SL: 2.3; WL: 2.8; GL: 4.6. Indices: CI: 95; SI: 184.

As in worker, with modifications expected for caste and the following differences: Overall color darker than in worker, with head and gastral dorsum brown. Entire body covered in a dense layer of pubescence; erect setae of varying lengths cover head, mesosoma notum, legs and gaster.

Male

LaPolla (2009) - Measurements (n=1): TL: 4.4; HW: 0.9; HL: 0.9; SL: 1.6; WL: 1.7; GL: 1.8. Indices: CI: 100; SI: 176.

Overall color brown to brownish-yellow, lighter brown on legs and funiculi; head darker than remainder of body; head about as long as broad. Cuticular surface dull, covered in a dense layer of appressed setae. Eyes large and bulging beyond head outline in full-frontal view; three prominent ocelli present. Scapes very long; scapes with many erect setae of varying length and a dense layer of pubescence. Clypeus roughly rectangular, with anterior margin emarginated. Mandible broad, with 4 teeth; all but apical tooth are weakly developed; apical tooth distinct, curves in toward body midline. Mesosoma enlarged to accommodate flight muscles; covered in a layer of appressed setae, with erect setae of varying lengths dorsally and on legs. Pronotum small and distinctly collar-like; mesonotum offset from pronotum at sulcus; mesonotum rises sharply above height of pronotum, giving pronotum a shelf-like appearance in lateral view. Mesonotum flat dorsally with many erect setae of varying lengths; propodeum indistinct from remainder of mesosoma, but with steep declivity. Petiole short, triangular, upright, with posterior face only slightly longer than anterior face. Gaster with a dense layer of pubescence and erect setae; terminalia especially setose. Parameres roughly triangular, turning slightly mesad posteriorly; long setae extend off of parameres. Cuspi small and tubular, reaching digiti dorsally; digiti weakly anvil-shaped, with poorly developed point directed ventrally. Volsellar lobes flat, slightly indented relative to digital margin; appressed setae cover surface.

Type Material

LaPolla (2009) - Holotype worker, PHILIPPINES: Dumaguete Negros Oriental, 7 April 1927 (J.W. Chapman) (Museum of Comparative Zoology) [examined].

References

  • Baltazar, C. R. 1966. A catalogue of Philippine Hymenoptera (with a bibliography, 1758-1963). Pac. Insects Monogr. 8: 1-488 (page 267)