Hypoponera comis

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Hypoponera comis
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Ponerinae
Tribe: Ponerini
Genus: Hypoponera
Species: H. comis
Binomial name
Hypoponera comis
Bolton & Fisher, 2011

Hypoponera comis P casent0192386.jpg

Hypoponera comis D casent0192386.jpg

Specimen Label

Hypoponera comis is only known from the type series. These were collected from winkler sampling of leaf litter in primary forest.

Identification

Closely related to Hypoponera importuna and with a similar, relatively very broad petiole in dorsal view. In addition to the differences in colour, petiole shape and size noted in the key, Hypoponera importuna is larger than comis, with HW 0.52– 0.58, HS 0.590–0.650, SL 0.48–0.52, PrW 0.42–0.46. Also see Hypoponera occidentalis.

A member of the abeillei group.

Keys including this Species

Distribution

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Afrotropical Region: United Republic of Tanzania.

Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

Hypoponera inhabit and nest in leaf litter, the surface layer of soil, downed rotten wood, and soil around plant roots. Nests are typically found by turning objects on the ground, like downed wood and rocks, or through the ripping away of bark found on rotting downed wood or at the base of dead trees. Litter samples in tropical areas, especially in moist forested sites, often contain individuals of this genus. All Hypoponera are thought to be predators of small arthropods but published details about their diet are sparse. A lack of information about other aspects of their biology is also typical for most species.

The genus is most diverse in the tropics. Species found in higher latitudes tend to be more widespread, common and abundant than their tropical and subtropical congeners.

Castes

Nomenclature

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

  • comis. Hypoponera comis Bolton & Fisher, 2011: 37, figs. 22-24 (w.q.) TANZANIA.

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

Description

Worker

Measurements: HL 0.61–0.65 (0.64), HW 0.48–0.50 (0.50), HS 0.545–0.570 (0.570), SL 0.44–0.47 (0.46), PrW 0.38–0.40 (0.40), WL 0.80–0.88 (0.86), HFL 0.42–0.46 (0.46), PeNL 0.16–0.17 (0.16), PeH 0.39–0.41 (0.40), PeNW 0.29–0.32 (0.32), PeS 0.280–0.270 (0.297) (8 measured). Indices: CI 75–79 (78), SI 92–96 (92), PeNI 75–82 (80), LPeI 39–44 (40), DPeI 185–200 (200).

Small eyes present but sometimes difficult to see against the black colour of the side of the head; usually of 1– 2 ommatidia but up to 4 may be present. In full-face view apex of scape, when laid straight back from its insertion, just fails to reach the midpoint of the posterior margin; SL/HL 0.70–0.75. Cephalic dorsum finely but distinctly reticulate-punctate. Pronotal dorsum almost smooth, with spaced, minute, superficial punctures, obviously much less strongly and densely sculptured than cephalic dorsum. Latroventral surfaces of head with spaced minute punctures. Metanotal groove absent to vestigially present on dorsum of mesosoma. Mesonotal-mesopleural suture absent to vestigially marked on side of mesosoma. Propodeum distinctly marginate between declivity and side. Posterior surface of petiole node without short cuticular ridges that radiate upward from the peduncle. Node of petiole in profile tall and slender, the anterior and posterior faces distinctly convergent dorsally so that the node is much broader just above the tubercle than at its apex, the dorsum narrowly convex. Subpetiolar process with an obtuse ventral angle. Petiole node in dorsal view short from front to back and very broad. Maximum width of first gastral tergite in dorsal view distinctly greater than the width of the second gastral tergite at its midlength. Base of cinctus of second gastral tergite glossy and polished, without trace of cross-ribs. Midline length of second gastral posttergite, from posterior margin of cinctus to apex, is about equal to or slightly less than the width of the segment at its midlength. Disc of second gastral tergite with sharply incised, small punctures that are separated by areas of glossy cuticle; the diameters of the punctures are distinctly less than the distances separating them. First and second gastral tergites dorsally pubescent and with a number of short, standing setae that conspicuously project above the level of the pubescence in profile. Full adult colour of head and mesosoma blackish brown to black, the petiole and gaster usually slightly lighter than the head.

Holotype Specimen Labels

Type Material

Holotype worker, Tanzania: Iringa Region, Ndundulu Forest Reserve, 1567 m., 23-26.x.2007, CEPF-TZ-8.2-F21, 7.78912S, 36.48539E, AFRC-TZ-03, primary forest, leaf litter, Winkler (P. Hawkes, M. Bhoke, U. Richard) (South African Museum).

Paratypes. 11 workers and 1 dealate queen, with same data as holotype (SAMC, California Academy of Sciences, Afribugs Collection, Barry Bolton Reference Collection).

References

  • Bolton, B. & Fisher, B.L. 2011. Taxonomy of Afrotropical and West Palaearctic ants of the ponerine genus Hypoponera Santschi. Zootaxa 2843: 1-118. PDF