Neoponera fauveli

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Neoponera fauveli
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Ponerinae
Tribe: Ponerini
Genus: Neoponera
Species: N. fauveli
Binomial name
Neoponera fauveli
(Emery, 1896)

Pachycondyla fauveli casent0249142 p 1 high.jpg

Pachycondyla fauveli casent0249142 d 1 high.jpg

Specimen Labels

From Mackay and Mackay (2010): One worker from Perú was collected under a stone. A colony was collected in the soil at the base of a tree. Winged males and/or females were collected in January (Perú) and October (Perú). A dealate female was collected in October (Ecuador).

Identification

From Mackay and Mackay (2010): The shape of the petiole of the worker of N. fauveli would separate it from most of the others in the genus, with the anterior and posterior faces being nearly parallel and the highest point of the petiole located near the midpoint. Neoponera fauveli would be most likely confused with Neoponera chyzeri. Neoponera fauveli differs in being smaller (total length of N. chyzeri > 12 mm) and generally lacks erect hairs on the scapes (a few may be present in N. chyzeri). Neoponera fauveli is very similar to Neoponera eleonorae, but lacks the brassy color that is characteristic of N. eleonorae (due to abundant appressed golden hairs). The eye of N. fauveli is also larger (diameter ~ 0.5 mm versus 0.4 mm in N. eleonorae) located about 1 diameter from the anterior margin of the head (more than 1 diameter in N. eleonorae).

Neoponera fauveli is closely related to Neoponera hispida but differs in lacking the tiny bristly hairs found on the scape of N. hispida (the hairs of N. fauveli are either approximately as long as the diameter of the scape or absent) and has the dorsum of the mandibles completely sculptured (not smooth and glossy as in N. hispida). Additionally the side of the mesosoma of the female is sculptured and weakly shining, not nearly smooth and glossy as in the female of N. hispida. The workers of both species have the side of the mesosoma sculptured in a similar fashion.

Occasionally specimens of workers and females of N. fauveli from Colombia and Ecuador have funiculi with yellow tips similar to those of Neoponera apicalis. Such specimens can be easily separated by the moderately abundant erect hairs on the dorsum of the mesosoma of the worker and female, which are sparse or lacking in both the worker and female of N. apicalis. These specimens of N. fauveli with a yellow-tipped funiculus could also be confused with Neoponera cooki. It can be separated as workers and females of N. fauveli lack the striae on the dorsum of the head, which are present on workers and presumably the unknown female of N. cooki.

Distribution

COLOMBIA, ECUADOR, PERU, BOLIVIA (Mackay and Mackay 2010)

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Neotropical Region: Bolivia (type locality), Colombia, Ecuador, Peru.

Distribution based on specimens

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The above specimen data are provided by AntWeb. Please see Neoponera fauveli for further details

Habitat

This species is usually collected at high elevations between 2000 - 2800 meters, but has been collected at 700 meters. One series was collected in an abandoned coffee plantation. (Mackay and Mackay 2010)

Biology

Castes

Worker

Queen

Nomenclature

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

  • fauveli. Pachycondyla fauveli Emery, 1896k: 175 (footnote) (w.) BOLIVIA. Wheeler, W.M. 1925a: 6 (q.m.); Wheeler, G.C. & Wheeler, J. 1971b: 1206 (l.). Combination in Euponera (Mesoponera): Forel, 1901f: 341; in Mesoponera: Wheeler, G.C. & Wheeler, J. 1971b: 1206; in Pachycondyla: Brown, in Bolton, 1995b: 305; in Neoponera: Schmidt & Shattuck, 2014: 151. See also: Mackay & Mackay, 2010: 314.

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

Description

Worker

From Mackay and Mackay (2010): The worker is a moderate sized (total length 12 mm) black ant. The mandibles have approximately 12 teeth and the anterior medial border of the clypeus is concave. The sides of the head are broadly rounded but almost parallel. The eyes are relatively large (maximum length 0.5 mm) located approximately 1 diameter from the anterior border of the head (seen from the side). The malar carina is absent. The antennal scapes are long and extend approximately three funicular segments past the posterior lateral corners of the head. The posterior border of the head is slightly concave. The pronotal shoulder is broadly rounded and the mesosoma is depressed at the metanotal suture, which breaks the sculpture on the dorsum of the mesosoma. The propodeal spiracle is elongated and slit-shaped. The anterior and posterior faces of the petiole are convex and rounded and meet at the highest point slightly posterior to the midpoint of the petiole (the apex is broadly rounded). The anterior face of the post-petiole is vertical and meets the broadly rounded dorsal face at an angle > 90°. The metasternal process consists of two widely spaced triangular lobes, similar to the condition in Neoponera schoedli and Neoponera aenescens.

Erect hairs are scattered on the mandibles, clypeus, dorsal and ventral surfaces of the head, absent on the scapes (one or two hairs may be suberect near the apex), scattered on the dorsum of the mesosoma, on all three coxae, mostly absent on the remainder of the legs, present on the dorsum of the petiole and all surfaces of the gaster; appressed fine silver pubescence is present on most surfaces, but only slightly abundant on the dorsum of the gaster.

The mandibles of the worker are dull and finely striate, the head is finely punctate, the mesosoma is coriaceous and punctate and the gaster is moderately shining with scattered punctures.

Queen

From Mackay and Mackay (2010): The female is a moderate sized (total length 12 mm) dark reddish black specimen with a yellow tipped funiculus (last four segments, at least of specimens seen) and reddish brown appendages and gaster. The anterior border of the clypeus is broadly convex, but concave medially. The sides of the head are nearly straight and slightly wider anteriorly; the posterior border is nearly straight or slightly concave. The eyes are relatively large (maximum diameter 0.54 mm) located about one diameter from the anterior margin of the head. The scapes are long (2.9 mm) extending more than ⅓ length past the posterior lateral corner of the head. The ocelli are small (maximum diameter of the median ocellus 0.07 mm) located about two diameters from the lateral ocellus. The pronotal shoulder is swollen and nearly forms a carina. The dorsum of the mesosoma slopes steadily downward from the middle of the scutum to the posterior face of the propodeum, with the scutellum rising above the surface.

The propodeal spiracle is slit-shaped. The anterior face of the petiole is weakly convex and meets the broadly rounded posterior face near the apex, but the medial part of the posterior face forms a poorly defined dorsal face. The subpetiolar process forms an anterior angle and a concave posterior portion. The anterior face of the postpetiole is broadly rounded into the dorsal face. The stridulatory file is present on the second pretergite, the arolia are absent between the tarsal claws. Erect hairs are sparse, those on the clypeus are relatively long (0.4 mm), the remainder of the hairs are relatively short (0.1 mm) and are found on the dorsal and ventral surfaces of the head, sides of the head, posterior border of the head, erect hairs are nearly absent on the scapes except at the apex, erect hairs are present on the dorsum of the mesosoma, dorsum and posterior faces of the petiole and all surfaces of the gaster. Appressed pubescence is sparse and fine on the head, dorsum of the mesosoma, anterior and posterior faces of the petiole and dorsal surface of the gaster.

The mandibles are finely striate and weakly shining, the dorsum of the head is densely and evenly, but finely punctate, as is much of the dorsum of the mesosoma, with poorly defined longitudinal striae on the scutum and transverse striae on the dorsal face of the propodeum, the sides of the mesosoma are finely striate and only weakly shining, the petiole is finely punctate, or coriaceous and moderately shining, the gaster is finely punctate and moderately to strongly shining.

Male

From Mackay and Mackay (2010): The male is a moderate sized (total length approximately 1 cm) dark brownish red specimen. The middle of the clypeus is strongly swollen; the ocelli are large (maximum diameter of the median ocellus is 0.3 mm), much greater than the distance between it and the lateral ocellus. The pronotal shoulder is swollen but does not form a carina nor overhangs the side of the pronotum. The propodeal spiracle is slit-shaped; the petiole is thick when viewed in profile, with a broadly rounded node and a broadly rounded ventral lobe.

Erect hairs are mostly short (0.2 mm) and are present on the clypeus, dorsal and ventral surfaces of the head, mesosoma, petiole and gaster; fine appressed golden pubescence is present on the head, mesosoma, petiole and gaster. Most surfaces are coriaceous and at least moderately shining, the side of the propodeum and petiole are slightly rougher sculptured with poorly defined striae.

Type Material

Bolivia (Mackay and Mackay 2010)

Etymology

This species was named in honor of an unspecified individual named Mr. Fauvel. (Mackay and Mackay 2010)

References

  • Brown, W. L., Jr. 1995a. [Untitled. Taxonomic changes in Pachycondyla attributed to Brown.] Pp. 302-311 in: Bolton, B. A new general catalogue of the ants of the world. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 504 pp. (page 305, Combination in Pachycondyla)
  • Emery, C. 1895c. [Untitled. Pachycondyla Fauveli n. sp.]. P. 175 in: Wasmann, E. Die Ameisen- und Termitengäste von Brasilien. Verh. K-K. Zool.-Bot. Ges. Wien 45:137-179. (page 175, (footnote) worker described)
  • Emery, C. 1896b. In Wasmann, E. Die Ameisen- und Termitengäste von Brasilien. Verhandlungen der k. K. Zoologisch- Botanischen Gesell-schaft in Wien 45:137-179.
  • Forel, A. 1901j. Variétés myrmécologiques. Ann. Soc. Entomol. Belg. 45: 334-382 (page 341, Combination in Euponera (Mesoponera))
  • Mackay, W. P., and E. E. Mackay 2010. The Systematics and Biology of the New World Ants of the Genus Pachycondyla (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Edwin Mellon Press, Lewiston. Information from this publication is used with permission from the authors.
  • Schmidt, C.A. & Shattuck, S.O. 2014. The higher classification of the ant subfamily Ponerinae (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), with a review of ponerine ecology and behavior. Zootaxa. 3817, 1–242 (doi:10.11646/zootaxa.3817.1.1)
  • Wheeler, G. C.; Wheeler, J. 1971b. Ant larvae of the subfamily Ponerinae: second supplement. Ann. Entomol. Soc. Am. 6 64: 1197-1217 (page 1206, larva described)
  • Wheeler, G. C.; Wheeler, J. 1971b. Ant larvae of the subfamily Ponerinae: second supplement. Ann. Entomol. Soc. Am. 6 64: 1197-1217 (page 1206, Combination in Mesoponera)
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1925a. Neotropical ants in the collections of the Royal Museum of Stockholm. Ark. Zool. 17A(8 8: 1-55 (page 6, queen, male described)