Hypoponera hawkesi

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

Hypoponera hawkesi P casent0192422.jpg

Hypoponera hawkesi D casent0192422.jpg

Specimen Label

This very distinctive species is known only from the holotype and three workers from Uganda.

Identification

Bolton and Fisher (2011) - A member of section 1 of the abeillei group but is rendered quite distinct by its high, short but dorsally very narrow petiole node, gracile appearance and relatively long scapes. The dentition is unusual for an African Hypoponera as there are 5 teeth, with just a single denticle between tooth 3 and 4, and teeth 4 and 5 are easily as large as tooth 3. It is impossible to say if this dentition is stable and characteristic of the species as a whole because so few workers are known.

Keys including this Species

Distribution

Known from Tanzania and Uganda.

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.

  • hawkesi. Hypoponera hawkesi Bolton & Fisher, 2011: 54, figs. 46-48 (w.) 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 0.57–0.58 (0.58), HW 0.47–0.48 (0.48), HS 0.520–0.530 (0.530), SL 0.42–0.45 (0.45), PrW 0.34–0.37 (0.37), WL 0.76–0.80 (0.78), HFL 0.43–0.46 (0.45), PeNL 0.14–0.15 (0.15), PeH 0.32–0.35 (0.35), PeNW 0.20–0.21 (0.21), PeS 0.217–0.237 (0.237) (4 measured). Indices: CI 82–83 (83), SI 90–94 (94), PeNI 56–59 (57), LPeI 43–45 (43), DPeI 140–150 (140).

Eyes absent. Apex of scape, when laid straight back from its insertion, projects slightly beyond the midpoint of the posterior margin in full-face view; SL/HL 0.74–0.78. Funiculus with 5 enlarging apical segments. Metanotal groove absent from dorsum of mesosoma but its former track marked by a change of slope between mesonotum and propodeum. Mesonotal-mesopleural suture weakly indicated on side of mesosoma. In profile dorsum of mesonotum slopes down posteriorly, its anterior portion highest and distinctly higher than the propodeal dorsum. Posterior surface of petiole node without short cuticular ridges that radiate from just above the peduncle. Node of petiole in profile tall and slender, the anterior and posterior faces distinctly convergent dorsally; the length of the dorsum is markedly less than the length just above the tubercle. In dorsal view the petiole node relatively very nar-row in relation to the width of the pronotum (PeNI 56–59). Subpetiolar process in profile with a low but distinct ventral angle. Maximum width of first gastral tergite of holotype in dorsal view (0.40) is noticeably less than width of second gastral tergite at its midlength (0.44). Sides of second gastral tergite shallowly convex in dorsal view. Midline length of second gastral posttergite, from posterior margin of cinctus to apex, is less than the maximum width of the segment. Cross-ribs at base of cinctus of second gastral tergite short but distinctly present. Disc of second gastral tergite with densely crowded, small, superficial punctures so that the surface appears microreticulate at lower magnifications. First and second gastral tergites dorsally pubescent and with a few inconspicuous short standing setae that are sparse, minute and difficult to see, resembling isolated erect pubescence rather than real setae. Full adult colour yellow.

Holotype Specimen Labels

Type Material

Holotype worker, Tanzania: Morogoro Region, Sali Forest Reserve, 1150 m., 17-20.x.2007, CEPF-TZ-9.4-F25, 8.94497S, 36.67261E, AFRC-TZ-04, primary forest, hand collected (P. Hawkes, M. Bhoke, U. Richard) (South African Museum).

All legs on the right side of the holotype are damaged: front leg missing beyond femur, midleg missing beyond trochanter, hind leg missing beyond femur.

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