Paraponera

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Paraponera
Temporal range: 19–0 Ma
Early Miocene – Recent
Paraponera clavata
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Paraponerinae
Genus: Paraponera
Smith, F., 1858
Type species
Formica clavata, now Paraponera clavata
Diversity
1 species
1 fossil species
(Species Checklist)

Paraponera clavata casent0006789 profile 1.jpg

Paraponera clavata

Paraponera clavata casent0006789 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen Label

This monotypic genus, exclusively neotropical, is well known and easily recognized from its giant size (> 2 cm long).

Identification

Its large size, conspicuous antennal scrobes, and the uniquely shaped petiole make this monotypic genus immediately recognizable.

Distribution

Throughout the wet neotropics. World distribution based on political regions. View/Edit Data
Paraponera Distribution.png Worlddistribution legend.jpg

Species richness

Species richness by country based on regional taxon lists (countries with darker colours are more species-rich). View Data

Paraponera Species Richness.png

Biology

see Paraponera clavata

Castes

Nomenclature

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

  • PARAPONERA [Paraponerinae]
    • Paraponera Smith, F. 1858b: 100. Type-species: Formica clavata, by monotypy.

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

Head sub quadrate, with the angles rounded, slightly narrowed posteriorly ; the eyes circular and very prominent. situated a littlebefore the middle, at the sides of the head; the antennre inserted forward on the face in deep cavities close to the base of the clypens; mandibles large, triangular, dentate on their inner edge; the labial palpi 3-jointed, the maxillary palpi 5-jointed; the node of the abdomen incrassate; the abdomen with a deep strangulation between the first and second segments.

Paraponera clavata. Image by Alex Wild.

This insect, which is now separated from the genus Ponera, will not range in any of the subdivisions here described; in the prominence of the eyes it agrees with the genus Ectatomma, but the labial and maxillary palpi are composed of a different number of joints.

Brown (1958) - Smith correctly noted the palpal segmentation; all castes of both sexes have a 5,3 formula. The female is winged, and both it and the worker have the hypopygium bordered on each side by an upwardly-directed comb of slender spinules. The male subgenital plate is in the form of a slender, up curved biramous fork resembling that seen in the males of cerapachyines. The hind wings of both sexes have a well-developed anal lobe. Weber (1946) has discussed certain aspects of the morphology and habits, and has called attention to the resemblances Paraponera bears to Ectatomma. Larval morphology is covered by G.C. and J. Wheeler (1952a :117, pI. 2, figs. 1-9) .

References

  • Ashmead, W. H. 1905c. A skeleton of a new arrangement of the families, subfamilies, tribes and genera of the ants, or the superfamily Formicoidea. Can. Entomol. 37: 381-384 (page 382, Paraponera in Pachycondylinae, Ectatommini)
  • Bolton, B. 1994. Identification guide to the ant genera of the world. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 222 pp. (page 164, Paraponera in Ponerinae, Ectatommini)
  • Bolton, B. 2003. Synopsis and Classification of Formicidae. Mem. Am. Entomol. Inst. 71: 370pp (page 178, Paraponera in Paraponerinae, Paraponerini)
  • Brown, W. L., Jr. 1954e. Remarks on the internal phylogeny and subfamily classification of the family Formicidae. Insectes Soc. 1: 21-31 (page 25, Paraponera in Ponerinae, Ectatommini (in text))
  • Brown, W. L., Jr. 1958g. Contributions toward a reclassification of the Formicidae. II. Tribe Ectatommini (Hymenoptera). Bull. Mus. Comp. Zool. 118: 173-362 (page 205, Paraponera in Ponerinae, Ectatommini)
  • Dalla Torre, K. W. von. 1893. Catalogus Hymenopterorum hucusque descriptorum systematicus et synonymicus. Vol. 7. Formicidae (Heterogyna). Leipzig: W. Engelmann, 289 pp. (page 18, Paraponera in Ponerinae)
  • Dlussky, G. M.; Fedoseeva, E. B. 1988. Origin and early stages of evolution in ants. Pp. 70-144 in: Ponomarenko, A. G. (ed.) Cretaceous biocenotic crisis and insect evolution. Moskva: Nauka, 232 pp. (page 79, Paraponera in Ponerinae, Ectatommini)
  • Emery, C. 1895l. Die Gattung Dorylus Fab. und die systematische Eintheilung der Formiciden. Zool. Jahrb. Abt. Syst. Geogr. Biol. Tiere 8: 685-778 (page 767, Paraponera in Ponerinae, Ectatommini)
  • Forel, A. 1895b. A fauna das formigas do Brazil. Bol. Mus. Para. Hist. Nat. Ethnogr. 1: 89-139 (page 111, Paraponera in Ponerinae, Ponerini)
  • Forel, A. 1899b. Formicidae. [part]. Biol. Cent.-Am. Hym. 3: 1-24 (page 10, Paraponera in Ponerinae, Ponerini)
  • Hölldobler, B.; Wilson, E. O. 1990. The ants. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, xii + 732 pp. (page 10, Paraponera in Ponerinae, Ectatommini)
  • Jaffe, K. 1993. El mundo de las hormigas. Baruta, Venezuela: Equinoccio (Ediciones de la Universidad Simón Bolívar), 188 pp. (page 7, Paraponera in Ponerinae, Paraponerini)
  • Kempf, W. W. 1972b. Catálogo abreviado das formigas da regia~o Neotropical. Stud. Entomol. 15: 3-344 (page 181, Paraponera in Ponerinae, Ectatommini)
  • Kusnezov, N. 1964 [1963]. Zoogeografía de las hormigas en Sudamérica. Acta Zool. Lilloana 19: 25-186 (page 50, Paraponera in Ponerinae, Ectatommini)
  • Mayr, G. 1862. Myrmecologische Studien. Verh. K-K. Zool.-Bot. Ges. Wien 12: 649-776 (page 714, Paraponera in Ponerinae [Poneridae])
  • Mayr, G. 1865. Formicidae. In: Reise der Österreichischen Fregatte "Novara" um die Erde in den Jahren 1857, 1858, 1859. Zoologischer Theil. Bd. II. Abt. 1. Wien: K. Gerold's Sohn, 119 pp. (page 14, Paraponera in Ponerinae [Poneridae])
  • Smith, F. 1858a. Catalogue of hymenopterous insects in the collection of the British Museum. Part VI. Formicidae. London: British Museum, 216 pp. (page 100, Paraponera in Poneridae)
  • Wheeler, G. C.; Wheeler, J. 1985b. A simplified conspectus of the Formicidae. Trans. Am. Entomol. Soc. 111: 255-264 (page 256, Paraponera in Ponerinae, Ectatommini)
  • Wheeler, W. M. 1910b. Ants: their structure, development and behavior. New York: Columbia University Press, xxv + 663 pp. (page 135, Paraponera in Ponerinae, Ectatommini)