Neoponera latinoda

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Neoponera latinoda
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Ponerinae
Tribe: Ponerini
Genus: Neoponera
Species: N. latinoda
Binomial name
Neoponera latinoda
(Mackay, W.P. & Mackay, E.E., 2010)

Mackay and Mackay (2010): Males were collected in a nest in February (Brasil). A possible male was collected in January (Guyana), a dealate female in April (southern Brasil).

Identification

Mackay and Mackay (2010): Neoponera latinoda is clearly a member of the crenata species complex with the characteristic well-developed malar carina, pronotal carina and heavily and densely punctate head and dorsal surface of the pronotum. Neoponera latinoda is larger than most of the species in the crenata species complex, including Neoponera crenata and Neoponera moesta. Neoponera latinoda could be confused with other larger species in the complex, including Neoponera globularia and Neoponera fiebrigi. It can be separated from N. globularia as the petiole is not globular in shape. The petiole is wider in N. latinoda as compared to N. fiebrigi from Paraguay.

Distribution

Brasil; a possible male was collected in Guyana (Mackay and Mackay 2010)

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Neotropical Region: Brazil (type locality).

Check distribution from AntMaps.

Distribution based on specimens

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

Habitat

Specimens were collected in mountain forest, at 700 m. (Mackay and Mackay 2010)

Biology

Castes

Nomenclature

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

  • latinoda. Pachycondyla latinoda Mackay & Mackay, 2010: 419, figs. 84, 85, 231, 294, 518, 542-547 (w.,ergatoid q.,m.) BRAZIL. Combination in Neoponera: Schmidt & Shattuck, 2014: 151.

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

Description

Worker

The worker is a moderate sized (total length 10 mm) reddish brown specimen. The mandibles have 14 teeth; the anterior medial margin of the clypeus is angulate. The sides of the head are nearly straight and parallel, the posterior margin is nearly straight. The malar carina is well developed; the eye is moderately large (maximum diameter 0.53 mm). The scape (2.08 mm) extends about ⅓ of its length past the posterior lateral corner of the head. The pronotal shoulder forms a strong sharp carina, which slightly overhangs the side of the pronotum. The metanotal suture is barely evident on the dorsum of the mesosoma. The propodeal spiracle is slit-shaped. The petiole is thickened when viewed in profile with the highest point slightly posterior to the middle of the apex. The subpetiolar process consists of an anterior angle followed by a slightly concave region; the remainder of the process is slightly diminished in thickness posteriorly. The stridulatory file is well developed on the second pretergite, the arolia are poorly developed between the tarsal claws.

Erect hairs are abundant on the mandibles, clypeus, dorsal and ventral surfaces of the head, sides of the head, along the posterior margin, along the entire shaft of the scape, the dorsum of the mesosoma, the dorsum of the petiole and on the subpetiolar process and on all surfaces of the gaster, the hairs are on the legs are nearly erect. Appressed pubescence is abundant on the head, dorsum of the mesosoma, dorsum of the petiole and dorsum of the gaster, the ventral surface of the gaster has a few scattered appressed hairs.

The mandibles are dull and finely striate with scattered punctures, the dorsum of the head is densely and evenly punctate. The punctures on the dorsum of the mesosoma are sparse with the surface between the punctures being smooth and shiny, the side of the pronotum is finely coriaceous, as is the mesopleuron and the side of the propodeum has fine striae. The petiole is mostly smooth and glossy with fine coriaceous sculpture; the dorsum of the gaster is finely punctate and shiny.

Queen

The ergatogyne is very similar to the worker with the head essentially identical, lacking ocelli. The only significant differences of the mesosoma are that the pronotal carina on the shoulder is less well developed and a piece of the forewing and the point of attachment are present. Apparently the posterior wing is completely missing. The remainder of the specimen is very similar to the worker. This individual is an ergatogyne, an apparently reproductive form anatomically intermediate between a worker and a female.

An apparent female (CASC) is similar to the ergatogyne, except that the ocelli are present but small. The total length is 14 mm; and the ant is entirely dark brownish black in color. The mandibles have approximately 14 teeth; the anterior medial margin of the clypeus is broadly convex and overhangs the remainder of the clypeus. The head length is 2.36 mm; the head width is 2.14 mm. The scape (2.2 mm) extends approximately the first funicular segment past the posterior lateral corner of the head. The eye (0.63 mm greatest diameter) is located approximately one diameter from the anterior edge of the head; the malar carina is well developed. The ocelli are small (0.08 mm); the medial ocellus is located approximately six diameters from the lateral ocellus. The sides of the head are convex and the posterior border is weakly concave. The carina on the pronotal shoulder is well developed and slightly overhangs the side of the pronotum. The propodeal spiracle is slit-shaped. The anterior and posterior faces of the petiole are nearly parallel, although the width diminishes dorsally and the dorsal face is broadly rounded and higher posteriorly. The anterior face of the postpetiole broadly rounds into the dorsal face.

Erect hairs are abundant on the clypeus, dorsal and ventral surfaces of the head, sides of the head, scape, dorsum of the mesosoma, dorsum of the petiole and all surfaces of the gaster.

The dorsum of the mandible is finely striate with scattered punctures with the surface being completely dull. The head is finely but densely punctate and completely dull. The mesosoma is finely punctate and many surfaces are shiny, although not smooth, especially the dorsum of the pronotum, the scutum and mesopleuron and the side of propodeum. The petiole is densely punctate, but most surfaces are moderately shiny. The dorsum of the gaster is finely punctate but weakly shining.

Male

The male is a moderate sized (total length 1.1 mm) medium brown specimen with yellowish brown appendages. The mandibles are tiny and have small cavities near the basal margin. The anterior margin of the clypeus is convex and the surface of the clypeus bulges when viewed from the side. The head length is 1.42 mm, the head width 1.26 mm. The eye is large, occupying most of the side of the head, its diameter as seen from the front (0.76 mm) is greater than distance between the dorsal margin and the lateral ocellus (0.36 mm) (oblique side view). The malar carina is not developed although the region is slightly swollen. The ocelli are approximately equal in size with the diameter of the median ocellus being 0.16 mm. The carina is not developed on the pronotal shoulder; the propodeal spiracle is slit-shaped. The parapsidal sutures and Mayrian furrows are well developed on the dorsum of the mesosoma. The petiole is thick when viewed in profile with the anterior and posterior faces converging to form the highest point on the posterior half of the apex. The subpetiolar process consists of an anterior angle followed by a concave region with the remainder gradually diminishing in thickness posteriorly. The gaster is strongly constricted posterior to the postpetiole.

Erect hairs are abundant on the mandibles, clypeus, dorsal and ventral surfaces of the head, sides of the head, along the posterior margin, on the anterior surface of the scape, on the dorsum of the mesosoma, dorsum of the petiole and all surfaces of the gaster; most of the hairs on the tibiae are suberect. Appressed pubescence is scattered on the head, mesosoma, petiole and all surfaces of the gaster.

The head is roughened and coriaceous but moderately shining, the dorsum of the mesosoma is glossy with scattered punctures, most of the side of the mesosoma has scattered punctures and is moderately shining, the petiole and gaster are moderately shining with scattered punctures.

Type Material

Santa Tereza, Esp. Santo, BRAZ., 23Feb.67, WL Brown. Holotype worker (Museum of Comparative Zoology), 2 paratype workers (William and Emma Mackay, Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de Sao Paulo), 1 paratype female (Museum of Comparative Zoology) and 2 paratype males (William and Emma Mackay, Museum of Comparative Zoology)

Etymology

From Latin, latus meaning broad and nodus, meaning knot, referring to the wide petiolar node of the worker and female of this species.

References

  • 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)