Lachnomyrmex lattkei

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Lachnomyrmex lattkei
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Lachnomyrmex
Species: L. lattkei
Binomial name
Lachnomyrmex lattkei
Feitosa & Brandão, 2008

Lachnomyrmex lattkei casent0173879 profile 1.jpg

Lachnomyrmex lattkei casent0173879 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen labels

Lachnomyrmex lattkei is one of the two species in the genus known only from the holotype. The specimen was collected in a leaf litter sample submitted to the Berlese funnel from an 1180m elevation forest in northern Venezuela.

Identification

Feitosa and Brandão (2008) - Body covered by fine, relatively sparse, and partially regular rugulation; promesonotum elevated well above propodeum level, in profile; metanotal groove impressed; propodeal spines straight and thin; teeth of propodeal lobes well developed; surface of first gastral tergite entirely devoid of long hairs. This species can hardly be confounded with any other in the genus given the body sculpturation pattern and the combination of elevated promesonotum, and the absence of long hairs on the dorsal surface of first gastral tergite.

Keys including this Species

Distribution

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Neotropical Region: Venezuela (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

Very little is known about the biology of these cryptic ants. Workers are frequently found in leaf litter and soil samples processed in Winklers or Berlese extractors, but these ants are never especially abundant within samples. When a dealate gyne is found associated with workers in 1m2 samples of leaf litter, normally it is found singly, which suggests that colonies are relatively small and apparently monogynic; workers and nests are extremely difficult to spot in the field, because the workers are very slow moving and well camouflaged; if there is any leaf-litter nest structure, it is destroyed during sifting, but our impression is that they do not construct any permanent nidal structure. Species of Lachnomyrmex apparently nest within the leaf litter, inside natural cavities of the superficial soil layers, fallen logs, and rotten wood, as evidenced by the large number of soil-covered individuals collected, from information recorded in specimen label data, and from observations of collectors. Workers forage alone, in the leaf litter and in the low vegetation, occasionally among epiphytes and moss, probably preying on small soft-bodied arthropods and possibly harvesting plant exudates. (Feitosa and Brandao 2008)

Castes

Known only from the worker caste.

Nomenclature

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

  • lattkei. Lachnomyrmex lattkei Feitosa & Brandão, 2008: 21, figs. 7, 18 (w.) VENEZUELA.

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

Description

Worker

Holotype HL 0.76; HW 0.72; ML 0.25; SL 0.49; EL 0.16; WL 0.85; PSL 0.21; PL 0.220.39; PPL 0.17; GL 0.99; TL 3.40; CI 96; SI 67; OI 22.

Color dark ferruginous, with appendages lighter. Head and mesosoma finely covered by vermiculate and predominantly longitudinal rugae, transverse on anterior portion of pronotum, grading to longitudinal on rest of promesonotum; mesopleura and lateral surfaces of propodeum sparsely covered by irregular rugae; mandibles with few and short longitudinal striae restricted to basal portion; petiole and postpetiole irregularly rugose. Abundant pilosity on head, dorsum of promesonotum and waist; dorsum of petiolar node and postpetiole each with more than 10 long hairs; first tergite of gaster entirely devoid of long flexuous hairs.

Head longer than broad, with vertexal margin gently convex; frontal lobes subquadrate; eyes with about seven facets at greatest diameter. Promesonotum considerably convex in profile, well above propodeum level; metanotal groove relatively broad and deeply impressed; propodeal spines straight and thin; teeth of propodeal lobes well developed, swollen basally, and with little less than the half-length of propodeal spines. Petiolar node only weakly elevated and rounded dorsally, in lateral view; dorsum of postpetiole slightly convex and without a well definite anteroventral projection.

Type Material

Holotype worker. VENEZUELA: Falcón: Petit, cia. La Maletta, Haitoncito, 3.vii.1982, J. Lattke col., no. 275, specimen code CASENT0173879 [MIZA].

Etymology

Species named after its collector, the prominent myrmecologist Dr. John E. Lattke, curator of the MIZA ant collection.

References

  • Feitosa, R.M. & Brandão, C.R.F. 2008. A taxonomic revision of the Neotropical myrmicine ant genus Lachnomyrmex Wheeler (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Zootaxa 1890, 1-49.