Pheidole carrolli

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Pheidole carrolli
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Pheidole
Species: P. carrolli
Binomial name
Pheidole carrolli
Naves, 1985

Pheidole carrolli casent0104286 profile 1.jpg

Pheidole carrolli casent0104286 dorsal 1.jpg

Specimen Label

Naves (1985) found carrolli only in the shaded, sandy soil of tall oak or pine woodland. Subsequent collection by Stefan Cover and Lloyd Davis Jr. have securely identified carrolli as an early successional species that occurs in open, often disturbed habitats with sandy soil. Colonies are vigorous and consist of several hundred ants, including several dozen soldiers. Naves’ collections may represent moribund colonies in poor nest sites, or colonies about to be eliminated by shading of formerly open habitats. The colonies are small, with only one or two majors present. According to Naves, no more than 15 minors forage at a time, and then singly and mostly at dusk and in the morning, for distances not exceeding 5 meters from the nest entrance. The entrance is difficult to spot and leads to exceptionally deep vertical galleries, in one case extending 1.7 m from the surface. A seedfilled granary chamber approximately 4 X 2 X 2 cm in size is present usually at a depth of 30 cm. The minor workers are exceptionally sluggish, and show the unusual, perhaps unique habit for Pheidole of feigning death when disturbed, often curling themselves around particles of soil in a way that makes them even more difficult to see. (Wilson 2003)

Identification

See the description in the nomenclature section.

Keys including this Species

Distribution

Known from Alachua, Citrus, and Leon Counties in northern Florida. (Wilson 2003)

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Nearctic Region: United States (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

Castes

Worker

Minor

Major

Queen

Nomenclature

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

  • carrolli. Pheidole carrolli Naves, 1985: 58, figs. 14, 43 (s.w.) U.S.A. See also: Wilson, 2003: 566.

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

Description

From Wilson (2003): DIAGNOSIS A member of the “pilifera complex” of the larger pilifera group; for a characterization of the complex, see under Pheidole pilifera.

Very close to pilifera itself (q.v.), and differing as follows. The only consistent distinction is the orange color of carrolli versus the browns, yellowish browns, and reddish browns of the highly variable, more northern distributed pilifera In addition the major of carrolli has occiput and dorsal surface of postpetiole completely smooth, but this trait also occurs in some pilifera series.

MEASUREMENTS (mm) Holotype major: HW 0.56, HL 1.82, SL 0.70, EL 0.24, PW 0.68.

Paratype minor: HW 0.52, HL 0.58, SL 0.54, EL 0.14, PW 0.32.

COLOR Major: “orange,” i.e., concolorous brownish yellow with a slight reddish tinge.

Minor: concolorous yellowish brown, head a slightly darker shade of light brown.


Pheidole carrolli Wilson 2003.jpg

Figure. Upper: holotype, major. Lower: paratype, minor. Scale bars = 1 mm.

Type Material

FLORIDA: Gainesville, Alachua Co., col. Marcio A. Naves. Florida State Collection of Arthropods and Museum of Comparative Zoology - as reported in Wilson (2003)

Etymology

This species is named after Dr. John F. Carroll, my friend and colleague during several years of graduate study at the University of Florida

References

  • Naves, M. A. 1985. A monograph of the genus Pheidole in Florida, USA (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Insecta Mundi 1: 53-90 (page 58, figs. 14, 43 soldier, worker described)
  • Wilson, E. O. 2003. Pheidole in the New World: A dominant, hyperdiverse ant genus. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA. (page 566, fig. major, minor described)