Pheidole neoschultzi

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Pheidole neoschultzi
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Myrmicinae
Tribe: Attini
Genus: Pheidole
Species: P. neoschultzi
Binomial name
Pheidole neoschultzi
LaPolla, 2006
Synonyms

The type material was collected from a litter sample.

Identification

LaPolla and Cover (2005) - Major 11-segmented antennae; antennal scrobes present; in full-face view head roughly heart-shaped; Minor Head and mesosoma covered in foveolae.

Within the tachigaliae-group, P. schultzi is only likely to be confused with Pheidole tachigaliae (all other species have 11-segmented antennae and transverse carinulae). This species can be distinguished from P. tachigaliae based on overall head shape: P. schultzi’s roughly heart-shaped head is very distinct. Additionally, the species is less hairy than P. tachigaliae and the major of P. schultzi lacks carinulae on the anterior pronotum. Finally, the scrobes of P. schultzi are much more weakly defined than in P. tachigaliae.

Wilson (2003) suggested that the tachigaliae species-group consists of two lineages: P. tachigaliae and the remaining species (Pheidole dorsata, Pheidole gibbata, Pheidole mendicula, and Pheidole pedana) each forming clades. Pheidole schultzi appears to be closely related to P. tachigaliae because it is the only other species in the group that possesses longitudinal carinulae. All other species possess transverse carinulae.

Distribution

Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists

Neotropical Region: Guyana (type locality).

Distribution based on AntMaps

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Distribution based on AntWeb specimens

Check data from AntWeb

Biology

LaPolla and Cover (2005) - Not much is known of the biology of tachigaliae-group species. P. schultzi were collected from leaflitter samples extracted in mini-Winkler bags. P. gibbata and P. pedana have both also been collected from leaf litter samples from Guyana (LaPolla et al., in review). P. tachigaliae is reported to nest in the leaf petioles of Tachigalia plants (Wheeler 1921). P. mendicula has been reported from an extrafloral nectary, but it is also known to occur in rotten wood and in soil (Wilson 2003).

Castes

Nomenclature

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

  • schultzi. Pheidole schultzi LaPolla, in LaPolla & Cover, 2005: 369, figs. 2, 3 (s.w.) GUYANA. Junior primary homonym of schultzei Forel, above. Repacement name: neoschultzi LaPolla, 2006b: 427.
  • neoschultzi. Pheidole neoschultzi LaPolla, 2006b: 427. Replacement name for schultzi LaPolla, 2005: 369, junior primary homonym of schultzei Forel, 1910f: 9.

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

Description

Holotype major worker. TL: 1.78; HL: 0.579; HW: 0.642; SL: 0.344; ML: 0.563; PW: 0.344; GL: 0.642; Cl: 111; SI: 54.

Paratype minor worker. TL: 1.156; HL: 0.375; HW: 0.376; SL: 0.344; ML: 0.391; PW: 0.250; GL: 0.390; CI: 100; SI: 91.

Matching general characteristics of the tachigaliae-group (11-segmented antennae and antennal scrobes) as defined by Wilson (2003). Major worker. Head: light brown, scapes yellowish-brown; in full-face view, head covered by parallel longitudinal carinulae; foveolae in between carinulae; head roughly heart-shaped; covered in scattered erect hairs; posterior margin concave medially. Mesosoma and Gaster: light brown, legs yellowish-brown; mesosoma, petiole, postpetiole, and gaster covered in foveolae; sparse erect hairs on mesosomal dorsum, more concentrated on pronotal dorsum; propodeal spines short, directed backwards; in dorsal view, postpetiole subrectangular; gaster shining, covered in a scattered layer of erect hairs; gaster yellowish-brown, with darker band encircling center.

Minor worker. Head: yellow; covered in foveolae; with scattered erect hairs; scapes reach to slightly surpass posterior margin. Mesosoma and Gaster: yellow; covered in foveolae; with scattered erect hairs; gaster shining, yellowish-brown.

Type Material

Holotype.- Major worker, GUYANA: Mt. Ayanganna, Dicymbe Camp, Mount Ayanganna, 5°17.760'N, 59o54.632'W, elev. 717 m, 6 October 2002 (J. S. LaPolla et al.) (Centre for the Study of Biological Diversity); 3 paratype majors, 3 paratype minors from same locality as holotype (Museum of Comparative Zoology, National Museum of Natural History); 5 paratype majors from GUYANA: Iwokrama Forest Reserve, Whitewater Camp, elev. 60 m; 58°50.992' W, 4°43.89' N, 5 November 2002 (J. S. LaPolla et al.) (USNM); 1 paratype major from GUYANA: Mt. Ayanganna Base Camp; elev. 732 m; 59°55.486' W, 5°20.063' N; 9 October 2002 (J. S. LaPolla et al.) (USNM).

Etymology

Named in honor of Ted R. Schultz for his many contributions to myrmecology.

References