Oxyepoecus ephippiatus

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Oxyepoecus ephippiatus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Solenopsidini
Genus: Oxyepoecus
Species: O. ephippiatus
Binomial name
Oxyepoecus ephippiatus
Albuquerque & Brandão, 2004

With the exception of a specimen label that includes "lowland rainforest", nothing is known about the biology of Oxyepoecus ephippiatus.

Identification

Albuquerque and Brandao (2004) - The exclusive character of the workers of O. ephippiatus is the very modified shape of the dorsal face of the propodeum (saddle shaped) with its level elevated in regard to the rest of mesosoma. O. ephippiatus gyne runs near those of Oxyepoecus vezenyii in Kempf ’s key (1974), however its propodeum is different, as discussed in the description.

Keys including this Species

Distribution

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Neotropical Region: Brazil (type locality), Ecuador.

Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

Castes

Males have yet to be collected.

Nomenclature

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

  • ephippiatus. Oxyepoecus ephippiatus Albuquerque & Brandão, 2004: 64, figs. 2a-c (w.) BRAZIL.

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

Description

Worker

Holotype and paratype within brackets t.l.= 2.62 (2.57); h.l.= 0.58 (0.58); h.w.= 0.49 (0.49); s.l.= 0.40 (0.38); m.l.e.= 0.10 (0.10); m.w.pr.= 0.41 (0.41); a.l.= 0.74 (0.74); h.f.l.= 0.49 (0.48); m.w.p.= 0.32 (0.31); m.w.pp.= 0. 34 (0. 31); c.i. 84 (84). Color ferruginous brown. Integument smooth and shining, with the following exceptions: frontal carinae with 4-6 short but well formed costulae that are not prolonged posteriorly, ending before the level of the inferior orbits of the compound eyes; genae with few longitudinal short rugae that do not reach the inferior orbit of the compound eyes; promesonotum smooth and shining; dorsal face of the propodeum with 6-8 well marked transverse costulae that cover the metapleural region; declivous face smooth and shining. Hairs abundant, long, but without a regular orientation on head, suberect and relatively curved anteriorly on pronotal dorsum, mesonotum and petiolar node; suberect, but curved backwards on the postpetiole.

Head. Mandibles relatively elongated, with a broad and shallow diastema between the basal and subbasal teeth. Anterior teeth of clypeus with lateral blunt and scarcely developed denticles. Frontal carinae gently convex, with the posterior ends at the level of the middle of the compound eyes, the maximum width between their outer edges approximately two fifths of the head width. Compound eyes medium sized, with about 6-8 facets r.g.d., which is almost equal to the distance between the anterior orbit and the mandibular insertion: total number of ommatidia about 30. Antennal scape failing to reach the occipital corner by a distance approximately equal to the maximum thickness of the scape. Funicular segment I as long as II-V combined, segments II-VII distinctly broader than long, VIII and IX as long as broad.

Mesosoma. Pronotum shoulders not at all marked, sides of the pronotum completely rounded. Metanotal groove not at all impressed with the mesosoma in profile. Propodeum very modified, with the shape of a pronounced horse saddle, the level of the dorsal face much higher than the level of the rest of the mesosoma, dorsal face of the propodeum immarginate on sides; posteriorly with two medium sized teeth. Declivous face laterally weakly marginate and carinate.

Petiole node high and round, antero-posteriorly compressed and laterally expanded in a scalelike fashion, almost with the same width as the postpetiole (d.v.); subpetiolar process with an anterior end as a prominent and blunt tooth directed obliquely forwards (p.v.). The postpetiole very broad, antero-posteriorly compressed, the subpostpetiolar process forming a small and continuous plate with its ventral margin bearing three regularly spaced minute notches.

Queen

t.l.= 3.32; h.l.= 0.69; h.w.= 0.58; s.l.= 0.35; m.l.e.= 0.21; m.w.pr.= 0.55; a.l.= 0.88; h.f.l.= 0.61; m.w.p.= 0.35; m.w.pp.= 0.34; c.i. 84. Color chestnut ferruginous brown. Integument almost as in the conspecific workers, with the following exceptions: genae rugae almost reaching the inferior orbit of the compound eyes; scutellum weakly marginate and smooth and shining; Propodeum as in the workers, although the level of the dorsal face is similar to the level of the scutellum. Hairs as in the workers.

Head (f.f.v.) more elongate than in the workers, occipital corners broadly rounded. Compound eyes with 12-14 ommatidia r.g.d. and a total of approximately 70 ommatidia. Ocelli equally developed, very small, with the same diameter of the thinnest part of the antennal scape. The antennal scapes when laid back over the head as much as possible, almost attaining the occipital border. Funicular segment as in the workers.

Petiolar node, in relation to that of the workers, more antero-posteriorly compressed.

Type Material

Holotype worker, Brasil: Amazonas: Manaus, Rs 1301 [01°30’S 46°11’W], 16.xii.[19]93, A.B. Casimiro [col.] # H-49, deposited in Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazonia. Paratypes: worker. Brasil: Amazonas: Manaus, 29.ix.[19]93, A.B. Casimiro [col.] # 2306, deposited in Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de Sao Paulo (coated with gold for SEM examination) paratype incomplete, just the mesosoma and petiole]. Gyne. Brasil: AM: Manaus, Rs 1104, 16.xii.[19]93, A.B. Casimiro [col.] # L-9, deposited in MZSP.

Etymology

Refering to the saddle shape of the propodeum (Latin: ephippium = saddle).

References

  • Albuquerque, N. L. d. and C. R. F. Brandão. 2004. A revision of the Neotropical Solenopsidini ant genus Oxyepoecus Santschi, 1926 (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Myrmicinae). 1. The Vezenyii species-group. Papéis Avulsos de Zoologia (São Paulo). 44:55-80. DOI: 10.1590/S0031-10492004000400001
  • Albuquerque, N. L. d. and C. R. F. Brandão. 2009. A revision of the Neotropical Solenopsidini ant genus Oxyepoecus Santschi, 1926 (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Myrmicinae): 2. Final. Key for species and revision of the Rastratus species-group. Papéis Avulsos de Zoologia (São Paulo). 49:289-309.