Eurhopalothrix punctata

AntWiki - Where Ant Biologists Share Their Knowledge
Jump to: navigation, search
Eurhopalothrix punctata
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Eurhopalothrix
Species: E. punctata
Binomial name
Eurhopalothrix punctata
(Szabó, 1910)

Eurhopalothrix punctata casent0280771 p 1 high.jpg

Eurhopalothrix punctata casent0280771 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

Wilson collected two stray workers in rain forest leaf litter. (Brown and Kempf 1960)

Identification

Keys including this Species

Distribution

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Indo-Australian Region: New Guinea (type locality).

Distribution based on specimens

Loading map...

The above specimen data are provided by AntWeb. Please see Eurhopalothrix punctata for further details

Biology

Little is known about the biology of most species in this genus. Nests are rarely found, and queens and males have not been collected for many species. Longino (2013) summarized their biology "Eurhopalothrix specimens are encountered almost exclusively in samples from mass extraction techniques that recover small arthropods in sifted litter, rotten wood, and soil. Densities, at least in the northern Neotropics, are usually low, with workers occurring in < 10% of quantitative samples of 1 m2 litter plots, but occasionally may reach densities as high as 40% of samples. Live colonies of Old World Eurhopalothrix were observed by Wilson (1956) and Wilson and Brown (1984), and a Costa Rican colony of Basiceros manni was observed by Wilson and Hölldobler (1986). All basicerotines, including Eurhopalothrix, are thought to be predators in tropical leaf litter, relying on stealth or sit-and-wait techniques. Sampled specimens are often coated with a thin layer of clay, especially on the face, which is thought to function as camouflage, enhancing crypsis (Hölldobler & Wilson, 1986). Highly specialized spatulate setae may be instrumental in acquisition and adherence of the clay layer (Hölldobler & Wilson, 1986)."

Castes

Nomenclature

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

  • punctata. Rhopalothrix punctata Szabó, 1910a: 366, fig. 3 (w.) NEW GUINEA. Combination in Eurhopalothrix: Brown & Kempf, 1960: 221.

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

Description

Worker

Brown and Kempf (1960) - TL 1.9-2.1, HL 0.52-0.55, HW 0.57-0.60 (CI 109-110), scape L 0.31-0.32, greatest diameter of eye ca. 0.03 mm, WL 0.52-0.53 mm, 2 workers from different localities measured.

In size and general body form, punctata resembles Eurhopalothrix australis, but it lacks specialized erect hairs except for those fringing the scape borders, a few clavate ones on the gastric apex, and a few short clavate ones on the gastric undersurface. The appressed ground pilosity is also much finer and less conspicuous than in Eurhopalothrix brevicornis and australis, especially on promesonotum, nodes and gastric dorsum, so that the body appears naked at first glance. The vertex bears a shallow impression, and there is no transverse carina on the clypeus. Alitrunk distinctive in form, lacking metanotal groove. Petiolar node subcubic seen from the side, but distinctly broader than long as seen from above, with rounded sides and straight anterior border. Postpetiole reniform, less than twice as broad as petiolar node. Color deep reddish-brown.

References

  • Brown, W. L., Jr.; Kempf, W. W. 1960. A world revision of the ant tribe Basicerotini. Stud. Entomol. (n.s.) 3: 161-250 (page 221, Combination in Eurhopalothrix)
  • Szabó, J. 1910a. Formicides nouveaux ou peu connus des collections du Musée National Hongrois. [part]. Ann. Hist.-Nat. Mus. Natl. Hung. 8: 364-368 (page 366, fig. 3 worker described)