Myrmica jennyae

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Myrmica jennyae
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Myrmicini
Genus: Myrmica
Species: M. jennyae
Binomial name
Myrmica jennyae
Elmes, Radchenko & Aktaç, 2002

This species builds nests in the soil, sometimes under stones, in high mountain meadows, cleared fir forests and forest edges. The colony containing the holotype was found nesting in soil at a forest edge. The nest was found by following foragers, the entrance was just a 3-4 mm hole with no visible above ground structure. The foraging workers were hard to see, moving relatively slowly and close to the surface of the ground.

Identification

The workers and queens of M. jennyae clearly differ from all other known Myrmica species by their extremely wide frons (FI > 0.50). They superficially resemble scabrinodis-group species, such as Myrmica rugulosa, Myrmica gallienii, Myrmica hellenica and Myrmica constricta, by the combination of a wide frons, a feebly curved frontal carinae and a gradually, while quite strongly curved antennal scape. On the other hand, males of M. jennyae have a relatively long scape that is similar to members of the lobicornis-group and is much longer than in any species of the scabrinodis- group. When compared to the lobicornis-group, the strongly curved antennal scape of the female castes of M. jennyae, that is never angular and with no trace of a carina, denticle or lobe, resembles some members of that group (e.g. Myrmica sulcinodis, Myrmica kasczenkoi, Myrmica displicentia, etc.). However, even apart from its extremely wide frons, M. jennyae also well differs from each of these on at least one other character (e.g. size, colour, body sculpture, shape of petiole, etc.). Furthermore, the anterior clypeal margin of M. jennyae is prominent and narrowly rounded medially, while in other members of lobicornis-group it is slightly convex and with at least a shallow notch medially. (Radchenko and Elmes 2010)

Keys including this Species

Distribution

NE Turkey and Dagestan.

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Palaearctic Region: Russian Federation, Turkey (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

Castes

Nomenclature

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

  • jennyae. Myrmica jennyae Elmes, Radchenko & Aktaç, 2002: 163, figs. 19-33 (w.q.m.) TURKEY. See also: Radchenko & Elmes, 2010: 155.

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

Description

Worker

Head longer than broad, with weakly convex sides, straight occipital margin, and rounded occipital corners. Anterior clypeal margin prominent, narrowly rounded medially. Frontal carinae very feebly curved, frons extremely wide (the widest among all known Myrmica species, FI > 0.50). Antennal scape relatively short, quite strongly curved at its base, but not angular and with no trace of a carina or lobe. Mandibles with 7-9 teeth.

Alitrunk with weakly convex promesonotal dorsum; promesonotal suture indistinct from above; metanotal groove distinct and quite deep. Propodeal spines wide at base, relatively long, acute and straight, not curving downwards and not divergent (seen from above), projecting backwards at an angle less than 45°. Anterior surface of petiole slightly concave, its node with feebly convex dorsum. Postpetiole somewhat higher than long, subglobular. Spurs on middle and hind tibiae well developed and distinctly pectinate.

Head dorsum longitudinally rugulose, only occiput with reticulation, clypeus with coarse longitudinal rugae. Antenna! sockets surrounded by fine rugae. Alitrunk mainly longitudinally rugose, only pro- and mesonotal dorsum with coarse reticulation. Petiolar node with reticulation, postpetiole with longitudinally-concentric rugae. Latero-ventral surfaces of petiole and postpetiole finely punctured. Surfaces between rugae on the body smooth and shiny.

Alitrunk dorsum with abundant, slightly curved, erect to suberect hairs; head margins with relatively shorter suberect hairs; antenna! scape with suberect and tibiae with short subdecumbent hairs. The overall colour brownish-red to yellowish-brown, appendages somewhat lighter.

Queen

Generally like workers in shape of head, character of sculpture, colour and pilosity of the body, except the head is relatively slightly wider, rear (upper) part of head dorsum has more developed reticulation, petiole is relatively shorter and higher and sides of the node has fine longitudinal rugulosity; no reticulation on alitrunk, only longitudinal rugosity.

Elmes et al 2002 Myrmica 3.png

Male

Head longer than broad, with convex sides and occipital margin, and widely rounded occipital corners; anterior clypeal margin slightly prominent and narrowly rounded medially. Frontal carinae very feebly curved. Antenna! scape relatively long (similar to species of lobicornis-group, see Radchenko 1994b,c), feebly curved at the base; antennae 13-jointed, antennal club 5-jointed, but not very distinct. Masticatory margin of mandibles distinct, with 6--7 acute teeth.

Alitrunk relatively short and wide, scutum feebly convex, and scutellum does not project dorsally above scutum when seen in profile. Propodeum with blunt rounded denticles. In profile, petiole relatively long and low, with its anterior surface appearing straight, sloping forwards gradually, dorsum of node rounded; postpetiole higher than long, with somewhat flattened dorsum (seen in profile).

Frons and lateral parts of head dorsum with fine longitudinal rugulae; surface of head densely punctured, appearing dull, clypeus with finer punctation. Central part of scutum with longitudinal striation and very finely punctured; scutellum with longitudinally-concentric rugulosity and fine punctures. Lateral parts of scutum and propleurae densely punctured; mesopleurae and propodeum with longitudinal rugulosity and fine punctures. Petiole densely and postpetiole finely punctured.

Head margins with short subdecumbent hairs. Alitrunk, petiole, postpetiole and gaster with sparse suberect hairs. Legs and antennae with very short subdecumbent hairs. Colour of body blackish-brown to black, appendages somewhat lighter.

Type Material

Holotype worker, NE Turkey, Trabzon Region, nr. Uzungol, 40°35'05" N, 40°17'47" E, alt. 2257 m, 16.viii.1999, TR-43 (leg J. E. & G. W Elmes); paratypes: 20 workers, 13 gynes, 4 males from same nest as the holotype; 4 workers, same locality, date and collectors, TR-45; 12 workers, 1 queen, NE Turkey, Trabzon Region, Sumela Yayla, 40°38'44" N, 39°40'40" E, alt. 1570 m, 19.viii.1999, TR-55 (leg J. E. & G. W Elmes); 11 workers, NE Turkey, Trabzon region, Hamsikoy - Balahor deresi, 46 km. SE Trabzon, alt. 1600m, 08.vi.1975, T-94 (leg. N. Aktag); 5 workers, NE Turkey, Artvin Region, Kaskasor mt., above and just west of Artvin town, alt. 1750 m, 14.viii.2000, TR-113 (leg. G. W Elmes); 6 workers, NE Turkey, Artvin region, Kafkasor yaylasi, alt. 1730m, 14.viii.2000, No. 00/107 (leg. K. Kiran); 3 workers, NE Turkey, Rize Region, Ovitdagi Gecidi, 50 km SE Rize, alt. 2600 m, 30.vi.1993, No. 1190 (leg. A. Schulz); 9 workers, [Russia], Daghestan, high mountains regions, 1972 (leg. Exp. of Daghestan State University) (TU, MIIZ, IZK, ELMES).

Etymology

Radchenko and Elmes (2010) - this species was dedicated to Jennifer (Jenny) Elmes, wife of Graham Elmes, who followed foraging workers to find the nest that contained the holotype series.

References